For the past few years, I have gotten into the tiny house craze. I mean really into the tiny house craze. Living tiny is on my personal Bucket List! And as the movement has evolved, it has begun to resonate with millennials embracing minimalism, Veteran organizations combating homelessness, working class citizens who desire home ownership, and as an answer to affordable senior housing.
Tiny house neighborhoods are being built to house veterans and provide services in a supportive community, providing a meaningful solution to a profoundly impacted population. Millennials are buying tiny homes in numbers to avoid financial pitfalls of previous generations, unwilling to add mortgage debt to rising education loans. In high priced real estate markets, ADU's (Accessory Dwelling Units) are being built in backyards to allow for affordable home ownership or reasonable rental rates in neighborhoods otherwise unattainable. And now, these smaller dwellings, enhanced with features such as cushioned flooring, motion and vital sign sensors, completely handicap accessible and even equipped with electronic medication dispensers are being built with affordable Senior Care in mind.
Sometimes called "Granny Pods" (groan!) or marketed as "MedCottages," these units could be the answer to cost effectiveness in long term senior care. With build costs of $85,000 - $125,000, this isn't exactly an inexpensive option - but compared to the cost of years of long term care this may seem reasonable. And these dwellings can be converted to other use or sold to another family in need to recover some of the expense.
Being a fan of the tiny house movement, this housing solution really appeals to me but does it appeal to the current generation of seniors? Will it appeal to my parents? There are so many things to discuss when formalizing a plan for the care of a senior - why not go outside the box and talk about going tiny?