My friend Laura was planning on taking a family vacation to Hawaii…but you know what held her up?
Rental car prices. I couldn’t believe it when she said the cheapest rental car on the main island was $500+ a day but here you go: Why Your Next Rental Car Might Be More Expensive Than Your Plane Ticket.
The youngest Martins and I just got back from a little remote-work vacation in Florida. It was fantastic to cross state lines and put our toes in the sand after a year of being cooped up.
But you know what? With prices on everything from lodging to entertainment going crazy in the travel industry- we’ll be joining Laura in her decision to hold off until things settle down.
Many more families we know are traveling to visit family (finally!), but they’re saving money by staying with relatives instead of renting someplace where demand has driven up the prices. That’s great if you can be the guest…but have you ever hosted family for a stretch of time?
If so, you know things can get a little…cramped. Spare bedrooms are great but little ones adjusting to crossed time zones and bathroom sharing can put tension in a great visit.
Have you decided to take that travel account and spend it a little closer to home?
What if I told you there was a great way to:
- Easily host friends and family for weeks at a time
- Increase your home’s value by 9%
- Save thousands on retirement home costs (if you’re looking ahead at having a more permanent family stay)
- Maybe make a little extra income…
- And never have to share your bathroom with guests again?
Let me introduce you to the in-law suite: The perfect way to increase living space while caring for extra guests.
I know what you’re thinking,
“But I Already Have a Spare Bedroom!”
Maybe you have a spare bedroom, a partially finished basement, or a big living room that accommodates several air mattresses.
Is an in-law suite a good addition for you?
Hear me out: there are so many more advantages to building an in-law suite.
The biggest: An in-law suite means you still can share your home with guests…but you don’t have to.
An in-law suite is typically bigger than a master bedroom. Think: extended-stay hotel. Amenities like:
- A private bathroom
- A kitchenette
- A sitting/visiting/dining area
- And a separate entrance
Give a suite-style home addition huge advantages over a guest bedroom. Hospitality without having to live on top of your family?
Before you dive into building plans, first think about how you want to use the space most. Let’s look at a few ways you can build a versatile home addition like an in-law suite:
Be Our Guest!
Your sister and three kids are visiting. They’re staying at your house because their go-to hotel is booked…and everything else is outrageously priced. Besides, you wouldn’t want to miss out on those late-evening popcorn parties with your nieces, right?
The living room is littered with air mattresses. The kids are all sleeping on couches to make room for the adults, who are sleeping in your kid’s bed. The line for the bathroom wraps around the hall and into the kitchen.
By the second night your stress level is through the roof. Instead of enjoying this family reunion, you’re counting down the days until you can catch up on sleep.
The good news: It doesn’t have to be like this!
You can get all the little kid snuggles AND still have a great night’s sleep without hearing them run to the bathroom six times in the middle of the night. It just takes a little more….space.
Enter: Your perfect Guest Suite.
The best part about this addition is that you can design it to fit your family’s needs.
Think of how thrilled your visitors will be with a bedroom and bathroom like this all to themselves:
And check out how these homeowners made the most of their basement suite by laying out this suite like a studio apartment:
Make your next week-long visit comfortable for everyone by designing a new space (or retrofitting a remodel) around who’s staying- whether that’s a mother-in-law who flies in for December or a cousin dropping in with his family for the weekend.
Plus- you can always offset the cost of building if you’re willing to host a few strangers. Let’s talk about rental:
Hello, Stranger! How A Separate Suite Can Pay For Itself:
Thinking of joining the Airbnb community?
But before you start uploading pictures on a website, ask these questions:
#1. Where’s the Location? If you live near a notable tourist spot or a college town, you’ll have better luck renting out your space. That’s not to say you won’t still book guests if you live in a less travelled area….but maybe you shouldn’t quit your day job to become an airbnb host.
#2. Have I installed proper security? The most trusted websites work hard to make sure all situations are as safe as possible for everyone involved. But at the end of the day? You’re still hosting strangers.
I’m not sure I’d ever rent out a guest bedroom. But an in-law suite? With it’s separate entrance and secure door between the suite and main house? I might consider it.
Still, you’ll want to set up extra security and make sure your main home is not accessible to guests.
Finally, the classic use of the in-law suite: hosting….in-laws! The in-law suite is perfect for an aging parent with plenty of wisdom to share- but who can no longer care for their own single-family style home.
Welcoming Aging Parents Into Your Family Long-Term
As of 2019, 20% of Americans lived in a multi-generational home. Many of us have already had “that” conversation and have started planning ahead for our parents.
An in-laws suite is a great way to bridge the gap between a parent who can’t (or doesn’t want to) maintain a single-family home….but doesn’t need 24/7 on-site medical assistance.
A new addition can seem like a steep cost, but compared to the price of retirement communities? You’re saving money in the long run. The average cost of an elder home can run over $4,000 a month- that’s $48,000 a year!
That money can easily pay for an addition in just a year or two. Plus, when invested early- you can enjoy the benefits of hosting other guests before you welcome a permanent addition to your family’s daily life.
Saving on living costs isn’t the only benefit of an in-law suite. This type of addition is a very attractive feature for prospective homebuyers: it increases home value on average by 9.8%.
You get all the benefits of having grandma around to help…with the privacy of a clearly defined living space.
If you’re building with an older resident in mind, think of incorporating these features into the design at the start:
- Non-slip floors, grab bars, and walk-in showers in the bathroom for safety and added mobility
- A kitchen with a shallow sink for easy access
- Extra lighting throughout the space for family with poor eyesight
Plus, plenty of natural light and cozy spaces so your new long-term guest feels comfortable spending time enjoying their space privately (think: watching the TV on their own volume in their own space…instead of your living room)
Ready to Get Started on Your Addition?
We can help!
Whether you’re planning for weekend visits or long term support, we would love to help you design an addition that fits perfectly into the exterior of your home.
You know what features you need to make it function best- let us help bring it to life.
Vern is fantastic at designing and building additions. Plus, we always take care of the permits and inspections on your behalf. (That’s one less thing to worry about when preparing for family coming to town!)
Call my husband Vern at 570-345-0406 to get on the schedule- let’s make your perfect vacation happen right here in Schuylkill County.
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