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The Granny Pod
Granny Pod, a new twist to the mother-in-law suite, are popping up in more and more neighborhoods . Much like a tiny house, these apartment-like structures offer a secure home to our elderly parents, while ensuring families that older loved ones have easy access to the family home.
While many seniors enjoy sharing the family’s home, some prefer a bit more personal space. Our generational households may seem more active than retired parents are accustomed to. They welcome interacting with family members, but also desire a space they can retreat to.
Enter The Granny Pod
Some companies now market special small apartment-sized homes that can be delivered and set up in the family backyard. Offering a small living area, bedroom and bathroom, these home add-ons create a separate space for Mom or Dad. However, when needed, a family member is but a moment away.
But closeness is only one of the benefits. A customized granny pod feature wide walkways to allow walkers or wheelchair access and handicap bars and handrails to assist seniors to stand. Ramps can extend directly to the family home, allowing easy access between the elderly and the family. Safety features abound and include video monitors and alarms.
See: Medical Granny Pods
For families wanting a more cost-effective choice, many choose options such as modified sheds and RV’s. Today’s sheds boast creative designs and modifications. These allow seniors and their families to choose and design a cottage-style apartment that complements the family home. Families then build custom walkways, often with ramps, to tie to the family home. Small gardens or shrubs along the walkway allow nature to bridge the area between. Similarly, a small manufactured home functions as a home
Similarly, a recreational vehicle, or RV, adds that private space for the senior’s new home. Seniors often find the RV quite comfortable as it contains all the necessities in a compact space. Families add modifications such as pull bars and perhaps a small porch off the trailer and leading to a ramp. Often available at a reasonable cost, used RV’s fulfill basic needs in a vacation-like form.
Find an RV here
Considering one of these options for bringing your senior family member closer? We’ve compiled a short checklist for your family to review:
- Is your elderly family member able to stay alone for at least a few hours at a time? If not, who will stay with him or her? Is the home solution able to accommodate all involved?
- Special medical needs such as portable oxygen, air conditioning, and bath or shower access need consideration.
- To save some money, could you include your parent or grandparent in your home, perhaps in a spare bedroom?
- Costs will vary widely. If you already own an RV that might be usable for your senior, consider the cost to modify it for use. Actual Granny pods might be the most expensive option but are usually delivered and set up for you. The cost will usually still be far below that of a senior facility.
- Will your senior be joining you for family meals? Consider any special dietary needs, too.
- Often seniors leave their home of many years, perhaps a lifetime, to move into your home or the Granny pod. What special accommodations can you make to help them transition more easily?
- Consider each family member’s thoughts and opinions when comparing all options. Of course, you cannot allow one child to completely outvote everyone else, but you should consider his opinions. Often, all members will contribute if offered the chance.
Have you considered backyard options for your senior parents?