There’s a strong trend towards multi-generational living, particularly in Sydney and its surrounds, where property prices continue to rise. And it’s happening in a number of different ways, with young people staying at home longer, older generations sharing homes, and people looking for affordable investment opportunities.
Studies indicate that one in five Australians currently live in a multi-generational household, and that trend is on the rise. Once the norm in many households, where the younger generation helps care for the older generation, the custom of multi-generational homes has experienced a downturn in past decades. It seems that what once was old is now new again, and multi-generational living has resurged at a time when the average Australian is struggling the most.
Dr Edgar Liu from UNSW’s City Futures Research Centre and author of Living Together: The Rise of Multigenerational Households in Australian Cities, says research has found that more than half of people living in this arrangement do so due to financial reasons, while others do it for companionship. Social contact allows us to support one another, interact, share experiences and provide help with modern life’s struggles. Having this interaction with others is what builds valuable relationships and gives us a deeper sense of belonging.
The benefits of multi-generational living
- There are many benefits to multi-generational living, including:
- Lower living expenses because they are split among more adults.
- Parents and adult children can co-purchase property that they couldn’t afford on their own.
- It can be a more cost-effective way to help care for ageing parents.
- It can help save on childcare costs.
- It keeps the family connected, close and fosters relationships between the oldest and youngest family members.
These positives notwithstanding, there can be negatives if the actual dwelling isn’t designed specifically for multi-generational living. A house not designed for multi-generational living won’t:
- Offer the requisite privacy;
- minimise noise transference;
- have a sufficient number of facilities (i.e. kitchens and bathrooms) to avoid a clashing of schedules; and
- have enough space provide independence for the different generations living in the house.
Why separate accommodation is ideal
This is where separate accommodation, such as a granny flat, is ideal. However, not everyone has enough space to build a separate dwelling alongside an existing house.
At ANSA Homes we have a number of unique designs that can be configured to be two homes under one roof, and even three homes under one roof.
With the right design, you can live like a family under one roof while also being able to maintain distance and enjoy privacy. A home can be designed as one dwelling, which saves on building costs, but can have a completely separate granny flat with its own kitchen, bathroom, living area, and one or two bedrooms, plus its own outdoor area and entrance.
The granny flat can then be utilised for younger members of the family who need their space; for older members who have downsized but want to be close to the other family members; or even as an investment. Its use can also change over time depending on your family’s needs.
ANSA Homes has a range of multi-generational living home designs that can be adapted to your needs with a house and granny flat in one. One of these designs (the Astaire) is the first house and granny flat design to win design awards from both the Master Builders Association (MBA) and the Housing Industry Association (HIA).
Knock down rebuild is a great option
There is also the option of knock down rebuild, which means you get to stay in the same neighbourhood but build a brand new home to suit the needs of all your family members.
Established suburbs often have larger blocks of land than the new outer suburbs, which makes them ideal sites for building a large home that will accommodate several generations under one roof. And by pooling the family’s housing costs, a knock down rebuild becomes a very affordable route to multi-generational living.
Why ANSA Homes for your multi-generational home
Southwest Sydney based ANSA Homes is a HIA and MBA award-winning builder specialising in knock down rebuild and house & granny flats. Large enough to have display homes at multiple locations, but small enough that everyone on our team knows your name, ANSA Homes give you certainty. Certainty of price, process, design, and expertise.