Dear Jan: We have been tossing around the idea of combining households with our adult offspring and their children. Are there homes out there that can house all of us under one roof without everyone stumbling all over one another? — BSA
Dear BSA: What you are describing is something I am seeing more and more of. I am calling it “Generational Living.” I admire this type of living, as I personally have felt for a long time that we went wrong in America when our families moved so far apart. Lots of great conversations were had on that old country porch. Today, families are living together to save money or to allow for the grandparents to be the live-in sitters for their treasured grandchildren.
As brokers, our software for the Northwest Multiple Listing Service lets us search for marketing words like “mother-in-law,” “accessory dwelling unit,” “second kitchen”, “bonus room,” “daylight rambler,” etc. We can filter through the listings to help find you the perfect property. You need to check the zoning laws of the county or city you want to live in; most allow for family members to live on the same property, while others require a permit.
Having said that, I have found that daylight ramblers work really well for Generational Living — one generation on the main floor, the second generation in the basement apartment. Another option that works well is when there is a guest studio or art studio separate from the main house. Ask your broker to do a special search and send you listings meeting the criteria you are looking for in a home.
Enjoy your family!