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Aging in Place: 4 Big Reasons to Consider an ADU

There often comes a time when an uncomfortable decision must be made when a loved one reaches an age where they’re no longer able to take care of themselves as easily. Where will they stay when they reach retirement age?

To offer the daily support aging loved-ones need, many will turn to the services of a retirement home, or community. Unfortunately, those making this major transition fear they’ll lose the independence they’ve enjoyed their whole adult lives.

Before you and your loved one makes this life-changing decision it’s important to consider another option that’s been gaining in popularity recently. Aging in place with an ADU, or Accessory Dwelling Unit. 

For the uninitiated, an ADU is a secondary living space that shares property with another residence. Think a tiny home on the same property with a full sized home, or the second floor of a garage converted to an apartment. If you’re interested, you can read more about accessory dwelling units here.

Aging in place with the help of an ADU can be the perfect compromise that allows your loved ones to retain their sense of independence, while being close enough to family when they need some extra help. In this article we’ll cover X reasons aging in place can be a better alternative to assisted living.

Aging in Place Can Be Cheaper in the Longrun:

It’s no secret that the cost of assisted living communities have skyrocketed over the years. It varies from state to state, but the average cost of an assisted living is about $4000 per month. While making the decision for aging in place carries a higher upfront cost, the investment could begin paying for itself in just a few years. 

Pricing something like an ADU can be tricky since there’s so many customizations to consider, but expect a price range between 80k – 120k for a fully functional living space with electricity, plumbing, and sewage. 

Now, it’s not just the living space that an assisted living home provides. As the name implies, assisted living provides not only a space for your loved ones to stay, but also the security of nursing professionals to offer their attention when needed. Luckily, aging in place with an ADU has an option to cover that as well.

Many companies offer At Home health aid services for those who do not need around-the-clock care. Often, these services are far more affordable than that offered by a full time home. At Home care can vary based on the scope of services needed, but on average expect to pay about $16 – $24 per hour.

Aging in Place is Often Healthier

healthly lifestyle during retirement

With the recent spread of Coronavirus, this point is more important than ever. The CDC has recommended that seniors should practice social distancing to protect themselves from infection. That can be easier said than done when your loved one is in an assisted living home with potentially hundreds of other residents. 

When an outside visitor or vendor introduces a virus, it can easily spread throughout, causing an outbreak that can infect the entire population. Luckily, aging in place can drastically cut down on the amount of exposure one would face in assisted living. They’ll even have the perfect spot to quarantine themselves if needed.

Aging in Place Offers More Time With Family

aging in place with family

The feeling of isolation is a real problem that affects many of those entering assisted living. The problem is even worse if the home is far away from any relatives. 

Studies have shown that frequent visits with aging loved ones can help ward off mental and physical problems as they age. Even quick and simple visits can have a huge impact. Quick chats during a leisurely walk, or cooking a simple meal together can give you a chance to connect when they need it most. 

Aging in place with an ADU removes all the common barriers for visitation. Time and distance needed to visit your loved ones will no longer be a factor when they’re in your own back yard! Plus, they’ll still have a space all to their own when they want it.

ADUs Can Be Customized for Your Exact Needs

Custom three-car garage.

As loved ones age, their mobilities needs may become more important than ever. Those needs can easily be addressed during the design phase of building an ADU.

Lapp Structures has been building customized structures for decades, which means we can provide the perfect shell that will accommodate your interior design requirements. 

With all this freedom you can build nearly any solution for a loved one’s needs. When planning these out, there are a few staples that should always be included.

Think about wider doorways to accommodate walkers or scooters. Lowering the height of cabinets will allow those who are unable to stand reliably to still reach clean dishes. Install rails down any hallways, and consider non-slip flooring or carpet instead of hardwood, or tile.

The Perfect Solution in the Right Situation

It would be an understatement to say choosing the perfect living situation for yourself, or a loved one will be difficult. With so many options to consider, it’s impossible to say one option will always be better than the other. 

An ADU is no replacement for those who need around the clock care from trained professionals. Also, the sense of community some feel when living with a community of peers cannot be replicated in a private ADU.

For those looking for a space to call their own while they enjoy their golden years near friends and family then an ADU could be just right. If this sounds like you, give us a call and speak with a friendly Design Consultants. They’ll help guide you to the right structure, and team of contractors to build the perfect ADU for your needs.  


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