Millions of middle-aged people have had to find room in their homes both for their grown-up children and their elderly parents as traditional large households make a comeback, a study shows.
Mainly driven by economic factors, the effects of recession, property prices and the cost of care for old and young have combined to revive the practice of several generations living under the same roof.
Almost 36 million people in Britain now have experience of living as adults in the same home as another generation of their family.
This includes the ever increasing “boomerang generation” of people in their 20s and even 30s, returning to live with their parents but also, family members moving in with younger relatives for companionship or care giving reasons.
Louise Colley, head of protection sales at Aviva, said: “Almost 20 per cent of inter-generational living is due to families welcoming the older generation into their homes….With a rapidly ageing population, this is likely to become more common in the future and families may need to take this into consideration when purchasing and renovating their properties ”
“One way of tackling all of these issues is to begin thinking about your home as becoming a well-designed 21st Century multi-generational home. “ – George Clarke.
The NHBC foundation have also highlighted the the important potential of marketing opportunities for house builders, many of whom build homes which, with little or no modification, can provide suitable accommodation for the most common categories of multigenerational households. More information on their report can be found.
Changing an existing home into a multi-generational home can be easier than once thought and there’s plenty of television series out there encouraging and inspiring the public to get the job done. We are shown that extra space can be gained while at the same time creating make semi or fully private spaces, ensuring a positive experience for all.
Loft extensions, garage extensions and other ground floor extensions are a great way of adding more space to gain extra bedrooms for either children coming back home or parents moving in. “I always think its better if any additional bedrooms are designed to feel a bit like hotel rooms so they have their own en-suite bathroom, little seating/living area, their own TV and their own small desk and maybe even tea and coffee making facitilities. If you want to give your kids or parents even more independence you can even design in a small kitchenette so they can cook small simple meals for themselves without having to use the main kitchen in the house.” George Clarke.
A garden studio building is a much more upmarket version of the ‘granny annex’s of old. It’s a brilliant way of giving members of your family a lot of independence, while being in close proximity to other family members or carers. It goes without saying that researching potential needs for planning permissions and building regulations for any type of structure or additions would need to be sought out before starting any project, something that house builders would do well to master an understand of beforehand, thus offering potential clients/ home owners a tried and tested solution to their issues.