08 Nov Building Multigenerational Homes for the Next Generation

This year, The Pew Research Center identified a growing trend in multigenerational living. This means that more and more families are returning to what was once considered an antiquated lifestyle where parents, grown children, and even grandchildren all live together under one roof. Many of the families in this situation have found it to be beneficial for all involved, but the growing trend has also highlighted the lack of options when it comes to finding a house that is the right size and design to suit multiple residents in multiple stages of life. So, if you’re looking to develop housing for the multigenerational demographic, here are a few key features to keep in mind.


Smart Design Trumps Excess Space

Yes if you’re looking to house multiple people in one home, no one would turn up their nose at some extra space. However, extra space doesn’t automatically translate into comfortable living. To truly attract a multigenerational buyer, make the most of all of the space in a home. One method of achieving this is to consider the needs of those family members who will most likely want to live on the first floor, the second floor or even the terrace level. Special accommodations for each may include wider doorways on certain levels, more partitioned-off areas on other levels, and the option for amenities like offices, media rooms or home gyms to make the house a home for everyone living there.


Built-In Privacy

Even for families that have chosen the multigenerational lifestyle, privacy is key. The design of a multigenerational house should focus on providing spaces for each family member or nuclear family to operate as they would in a standard single family home, without interrupting the other members of the household. One way to approach this may be by including an entire In-law suite, with a separate entrance and living area from the rest of the home, giving older family members a place of their own and the freedom to come and go as they please. Another consideration could be a basement playroom, gym and/or office, allowing the younger members of the family to enjoy these amenities without disturbing the rest of the household, or vice versa.


A Focus on the Suite Life

Most new construction homes in 2016 have a master suite in some format. However, if you’re building a home for a family with multiple adults, one master suite may not be enough. By creating a second or even third master suite, you give all of the adults in the family a sense of belonging and ownership in the home, which is key for making the multigenerational arrangement work.


Flexibility is Key

One of the distinguishing factors of the multigenerational household trend is that no two families are the same. Even with large nuclear families, you don’t have the same number of variables and possibilities that you face when trying to build for a family that could include any combination of elderly parents, retirees, Gen-Xers and Millennials and younger children. So, the key to success in multigenerational housing is to remain flexible and provide plans that are unique, yet adaptable, just like the families who will come to call them home.


Need help marketing your next multigenerational home? Give Idea Associates a call!

Sibet B Freides