Whether the reason is economic or cultural, multigenerational living is a growing trend all across our country. More young adults are returning to live with their parents and elderly parents are moving in with their adult children. Yet many homes are just not well suited for having more than one generation living in the same house. Here are seven design tips to help you make the most of this sometimes challenging living arrangement:
- Space is king. Let's face it. Each generation think and live a bit differently than the next. So your house should offer each generation enough living space so you all can feel comfortable.
- Have elderly family member’s living space all on the ground floor makes sense to for mobility. Avoiding stairs for elderly makes sense.
- Separate master suites work well. Each generational family member would have their own bathroom. Master suites that are not too close to each other are best for privacy.
- Consider providing a small separate kitchen just for your young adult or elderly family members that is separate from the main kitchen area.
- Think about having a separate entry especially for your young adult family member to give them the independence they so want.
- Add sound attenuation insulation in your walls, floors and ceiling cavities to separate you from younger family members’ living space. Also, remember carpet flooring is great for helping to reduce noise.
- Look into whether your home layout can be changed relatively easily to better accommodate the challenges and needs of each family member. Explore making some minor home revisions that will have a major, positive impact so you all can live peacefully in your home.
Ira A. Henowitz Architect