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5 Ideas For Building Or Buying A Multigenerational Home

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Do you have adult family members living with you? More and more Americans are now sharing a home with aging parents, grandparents, adult children, and grandchildren. While sharing close quarters can be a challenge, it also comes with great benefits — financially, physically, and emotionally. 

If you're in this situation, one of the best ways to make it work is to find the right house or property for sale. Here are five different property types that could make the perfect multigenerational home layout:

1. Duplex

A duplex or triplex is a single structure that houses two or three individual units within its exterior. Most duplexes are side-by-side mirror images of each other with separate entrances, one or two bedrooms each, and divided garages. Each couple or family member would have their own dedicated space while sharing the cost of a single home. 

2. Multi-Story Home

A multi-story home could provide many of the same benefits as a duplex but with a shared entrance. Look for a two- or three-story home (perhaps including a basement) that has the ability to duplicate some room functions on each level. You may want to add a kitchen or kitchenette on the second floor, for instance, so that different families can have some privacy as well as access to public areas. 

3. Two Structures

Some properties have a secondary unit that could be used as a separate house. It may already be constructed, like a "mother-in-law cottage", or have something that could be remodeled like a detached garage. If you have something to work with and you know that the zoning allows it, the renovation cost will likely be less. 

4. Neighbor Properties

If adding a second residence to your property isn't an option, you might purchase two homes that are very close to one another. Side-by-side homes — or even those within the same block — give everyone space but still keep aging relatives within easy reach of assistance. Can't find two homes for sale at the same time? Consider making an offer to a neighbor. You might be surprised by the response.

5. Separate Suites

If you're building a new construction, you have the freedom to create separate suites within a single home. By adding a master suite that is significantly separated from the home's other master suite, two or more families can have privacy while sharing only the common areas of the house.  

Which of these multigenerational home styles could work for your situation? No matter what your needs and goals, there is a property out there that will make everyone in your extended household happy and safe. Start looking today by consulting with an experienced real estate agent.