Friday, August 28th, 2020 by Tracy Prouty
The older we get, the more we grow to realize the importance of family, and appreciate the time we have left to connect with them. Unfortunately, by the time we learn that, we often are faced with a difficult decision of what those later years in life will look like, particularly as our parents move into their later season of life.
We grow up being cared for by our mothers and fathers, and it can be a heavy conversation that hangs in the air when signs start to show that the tide is turning and they are needing to depend a little on us. There is a desire to help them be as independent and autonomous as possible, but what are the options?
Assisted Living facilities offer multiple levels of caretaking that can create space for independence or more direct care. In Arizona, the average monthly cost of an Assisted Living community for 2019 was $3,800 per month, and can reach as high as $5,098 monthly, and depending on the level of help or care needed, it can go upwards to even $10,000 per month. At the average, this results in a minimum of $42,000 annually, not too far below the national average of $48,000 per year.
We have seen an unexpected downside to this choice in recent months. In today’s current climate, elderly parents staying in Senior Living facilities or even in their own homes have been cut off from their children and grandchildren for longer periods of time than they planned. It’s a situation that could not have been imagined or foreseen when the decision was first made.
We have received an increased number of requests in recent months for our Designers to discuss the options of Guest Houses/Casitas or Additions to the home, inquiries which had already been growing over the years. Some of these clients are wanting to get their parent out of assisted living and closer to family, some have family members making the decision to sell their homes and move in with them, others still are planning for the future to come.
From garage and shed conversions, to new builds on the property, there are many options that could make this a reality for your home. So many see it as a daunting, financially insurmountable task to add to their home, that they don’t pursue the option. The average Casita can cost from $100,000 to $200,000 to build, depending on location, size, materials, and other variables. Perhaps just reading that sentence made you want to run for the hills!
Consider this, the average resident in an assisted living facility spends three years there. Depending on the cost span in Arizona, that totals anywhere from $126,000 to $180,000. At the end of the stay, what is there to show for the cost? When you choose to invest that same amount into your property, you can create a beautiful Guest Home that raises the property value and leaves more behind for future generations to benefit.
Many who build Guest Homes in the “plan ahead” stage also use these independent single bedroom or studio style living spaces to create revenue by offering it as a rental. This allows for an offset of the financial undertaking.
I myself had one of my best rental experiences being a tenant in a Mother-In-Law’s quarters that the homeowners had added on to the home. The private entrance and full utilities were at my disposal. It was comforting to know my neighbors/landlords were right there should I need. They in turn had peace of mind when they would leave town knowing they had someone living near enough to check on their home.
That same independence alongside security and companionship is what makes the Guest House/Casita the top choice for many families as they start planning for their parents’ golden years. If this year has taught us anything, it is the importance of keeping family close and being there to support one another.
Below is a detached garage that was converted into a studio Guest House, with a full bath and kitchen. The patio added to the front further creates the feeling of home for whoever is lucky enough to lay their head down each night here.
We are here to design to your needs and wants. Building on to your home can also require permitting and jumping through HOA hoops. TraVek is well versed in the process and we want to help take the stress of planning off of your plate. Call 1-480-367-1171 to schedule your in-home consultation today!