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Five key qualities of multigenerational homes

by Barbra Murray

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When the great recession started in 2007, many families merged their households with older generations in order to save money. According to John Burns Real Estate Consulting, the social stigma of “multigenerational living” has disappeared, and 44 percent of new home shoppers want to accommodate their aging parents. Today, 21 million households live in homes that are not designed for multigenerational living.

According to the consulting group, many families are looking to build homes with dedicated space for older adult generations, which tend to be “homes within a home.”

“I think the builders figured out there was a huge opportunity here that they had missed, designing for these types of households,” said John Burns, CEO of John Burns Real Estate Consulting in an interview with CNBC.

Key elements of multigenerational homes include:

• Privacy – Multigenerational homes should have a separate entrance to create a sense of privacy.

Temperature Control – Having control over the temperature of a room allows a space to feel more personal.

• Kitchenette – An area to prepare food and drinks helps those who live in a separate space to be more independent.

• Separate Bathroom – Multigenerational homes should have a bathroom dedicated for use by the older generation.

• Entertainment Area – A non-bedroom area for entertaining and relaxing makes the space feel less like a single room.

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