Grannys aren’t just for Christmas

As the festive season arrives, most Brits all over the country prepare to open their homes to friends or family but as a nation, we haven’t always encouraged their company all year round, or used Christmas time to help them make sensible plans for their future.

It’s assumed this is because most aren’t particularly fond of the thought of having to spend more time with family, but new research commissioned by iHus, the UK’s leading specialist in the design and build of stylish bespoke Granny Annexes, reveals a major shift in UK attitudes towards multigenerational living.

The report reveals a significant change in perception, over half (56%) of Brits would be happy* to have their parents or in-laws live close to them and almost a quarter (23%) agreeing they have considered cohabiting with their parents to share living expenses and provide mutual support as they age.

This shift in sentiment signifies a departure from traditional beliefs about family structure, suggesting a growing inclination towards embracing multigenerational living arrangements. Some of the top motivators and benefits behind moving in together as been, health concerns for parents (30%), to make the most of the time they have with them (26%), a widowed parent (15%), support with childcare (13%) or household chores (12%).

The new report suggests people are looking for a way to keep their loved ones close by, even if living under the same roof feels like too much pressure, something only a quarter of the population said they’d considered. What’s more, almost a third of Brits said their attitudes to spending quality time with their parents and/or in-laws changed as a result of the pandemic, with over half of that figure saying it’s more of a priority now than ever before and hasn’t waned despite the world being back to normal.

But as house prices continue to soar and the cost-of-living crunches, moving back in with your parents might solve more than just your family dilemmas.

In fact, it could be one of the smartest financial decisions Brits make in the next few years, for themselves and their parents. With property prices rising by an average of £10k this year and care home prices having risen by 57%* in the last 5 years, living together could help families save thousands annually; all while restoring those reminiscent family values.

“Understandably, a lot of UK adults aren’t keen on moving back in with their parents, or vice versa. But our latest research shows a real yearning for Brits to live closer to their families – over 50% of us in fact! However, a much slimmer percentage of people have ever considered building an annexe as a solution to this problem, even though it can offer families a way of living closer together but still apart” iHus CEO and founder Trevor Smeaton commented.

By cutting out care costs for parents, and potentially cutting care costs for your own children with family being so close by, multigenerational living could help Britons save significantly more. And, as our research showed, almost 40% felt living close to family would improve their mental health and level of emotional support and companionship.

While care homes are the right option for many, it’s not right for everyone, and multigenerational living is often a forgotten solution to an age-old problem. Considering moving closer to your loved ones, you could help your family live happier, healthier, and wealthier.

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