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The Basics of Multigenerational Living in Southern California

The cost of living is high, particularly in Southern California–and many jobs aren’t offering raises fast enough to keep up with it. For this reason, among many others, many families are turning to multigenerational living options. It’s not a new trend. In fact, multigenerational living in Southern California has been around for years. The difference is that now there are homes specifically designed with this idea in mind.

The Benefits of Multigenerational Living
Typically, young adults can’t wait to get out of their parents’ houses and out on their own. Their first apartment is a huge milestone, even if it’s a tiny closet of a room shared with a roommate. As those young adults age, however, they discover multigenerational living has a number of financial advantages–and as a result, they’re moving home with mom and dad. Benefits of multigenerational living include:

• Help with upkeep on the house, whether it’s for young people who haven’t yet mastered the tools of home ownership or older individuals who are struggling to keep up with maintenance
• The ability to go in together on a down payment
• Shared utility bills
• Easy access to childcare with no need to travel
• Shared house payments
• Keeping an eye on aging family members who might not be able to live independently as easily
• Shared shopping, transportation and other responsibilities
• Closer family connections

While it’s important multigenerational families set out guidelines and seriously discuss the challenges they’ll face before they move in together, most families quickly discover the benefits of shared living far outweigh many of the minor inconveniences.

What Does a Multigenerational Home Look Like?
Multigenerational homes aren’t so different from the normal, single-family dwellings most people grew up in. The difference is they are designed to allow both family units to have their own space while sharing the communal dwelling. In addition to all the other rooms that accompany a normal house, multigenerational homes have an additional area with:

• A second master-style bedroom or suite
• A kitchenette
• Secondary washer/dryer hookups
• A sitting area
• An exterior entrance to the secondary area

In essence, multigenerational homes come complete with a “home within a home.” It’s designed to allow grandparents the opportunity to get away within their own space while still providing them with the chance to live close to their children and grandchildren.

Other Uses for Multigenerational Homes
Multigenerational homes don’t have to be used for three-generational families alone. In fact, they have a number of key uses even if you decide that the multigenerational life is no longer working for you. The extra suite can also be used for:

• “Boomerang children” who have returned from college and need a place to live while getting on their feet
• A roommate situation, especially if one roommate has a large family and the other is single
• A home office, especially for a parent who needs to be able to get away from the kids while working from home
• An older child who needs a space to call his or her own
• Siblings who choose to share a home for their families

Multigenerational homes are designed specifically to allow each group or individual to have their own space while still sharing common living areas ¬and it’s a trend that is growing quickly. It’s no longer unique to live in a multigenerational home or to share space with roommates, siblings or other family members. In fact, many family members find the added convenience and security are well worth any minor inconveniences ¬and that it’s a situation that “just works.”

Since multigenerational living has become so common, home design has shifted to match. If you’re looking for a multigenerational home in Southern California, contact us today to learn more about how we can help bring your entire family to the home of your dreams.

Are you looking for a new home in Orange County, Long Beach or the Los Angeles metro area? Brandywine Homes is opening six new communities this year offering a combined 265 single-family homes and town homes. If you would like more information, sign up for our interest list here.