New home features that make multigen living more spacious, functional and comfortable for everyone.

Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADUs/DADUs), guest houses, a first-floor guest suite, casita, a fully-equipped in-law suite—while each may differ slightly, these separate living spaces bring two or more generations of family or extended relatives together under one roof. Since the coronavirus pandemic, demand for these types of homes has grown in popularity, and with good reason.

Grandparents or adult children can help with in-home childcare or virtual classroom learning. Aging parents can avoid assisted living facilities that are costly and may pose a greater risk of illness. Families can spend more quality time together in a comfortable and convenient setting, not to mention the potential advantages of shared financial responsibilities. With this in mind and the lifestyle changes stirred by Covid, it’s no surprise that multigen home sales are up 15% —the highest rate increase seen since the Great Recession, according to a report by the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

The momentum for multigen homes is here to stay and cities are looking for ways to meet the demand. In 2019, Seattle made it easier for homeowners to build ADUs (referred to locally as DADUs) by eliminating certain parking restrictions for residential housing. California passed Senate Bill 9 (SB 9) which gives homeowners in many single family residential zones the green light to build additional homes on their current lot. Pasadena—a neighboring city of Los Angeles—also created the Pasadena Second Unit ADU Program to help homeowners finance the construction of ADUs on their property. And similarly, Denver city planners responded to the uptick of multigen housing requests by developing a rezoning plan for entire neighborhoods that removes barriers to building an ADU. These changes open up more opportunities for homeowners and encourage ways to utilize their space more productively.

What makes a multigen home multifunctional?

Considering a home that can accommodate aging parents, adult children, or simply extra space for visiting relatives? Without a well-designed or adapted space, your home could feel overcrowded. Check out these key characteristics that make the blueprint for a comfortable and enjoyable multigen home.

Purpose-designed spaces
Everyone needs their own space and time alone now and then, especially if family members regularly work from home. While shared spaces for gathering together are important, a home with dedicated areas for working, studying or homeschooling, working out, watching movies, and more will bring more functionality and ease to multigen living.

13423 Bayliss Road, Los Angeles, CA 90049
5419 SQ. FT. | 6 BEDS | 7 BATHS
View 13423 Bayliss Road

This transitional TJH home in Brentwood Hills, Calif. features the best of both worlds with an open-concept great room and kitchen combined with designated spaces for privacy, including a study/playroom, second living room with sliding doors, main floor guest suite with private den, home office, and upstairs loft.

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)
For some, a home with an ADU—also called a granny flat, guest house, or in-law suite—makes multigenerational living easier. Built as a second smaller home next to the main home, ADUs give older family members the privacy of their own apartment-style home with the convenience of being steps away. While local zoning rules vary, more cities have recognized the benefits ADUs bring and many are updating zoning laws to allow homeowners to build an ADU on their property.

2246 SQ. FT. | 4 BEDS | 4 BATHS
View 220 Matadero Avenue

This single story modern home is designed with an attached ADU with a separate entrance off the foyer. The ADU suite is complete with a kitchenette and dining space, closet, en suite bathroom, and convenient access to the main home.

Accessibility + Safety
If an ADU isn’t the right fit for your home, a bedroom suite on the main floor can be just as accommodating. Not only does it make it easier and more accessible for aging relatives, a first floor bedroom also creates a natural separation for privacy.

2943 SQ. FT. | 4 BEDS | 4.5 BATHS
View Almaden Transitional

This Build on Your Homesite plan from our Almaden Collection features plenty of space for multigen living with a first floor suite that includes a full bath and walk-in closet, and a quiet retreat from the main living area.

At Thomas James Homes, we understand the importance and benefits of multigen living, along with the nuances it requires. Explore our collective library of customizable homes designed to bring ease, comfort, space, and convenience—all under one roof.

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