More Homes Built for Roommates?

January 27, 2016

The New American Home, unveiled at the International Builder Show last week in Las Vegas, was designed with roommates in mind. The 5,200-square-foot home tied in nontraditional living arrangements for extended families or roommates who may be sharing the same roof to ease financial burdens.

The home, designed by Element Design Build, incorporated affordability and cohabitation as top concerns, including a second floor that can accommodate aging parents or recent college graduates who are moving back home. The intent was to accommodate two families comfortably.

Industry professionals say they are seeing increasing demand for properties that can easily be shared by extended family members, roommates, or even rented out to tourists. Indeed, for the year ending June 2015, 13 percent of buyers purchased a home to accommodate multiple generations, according to research by the National Association of REALTORS®. What’s more, a quarter of all buyers say they want a separate suite in their home with a kitchenette to accommodate extended family members or roommates, according to research by John Burns Real Estate Consulting Inc.

Another home spotlighted at the builder show was created by Pardee Homes and included two guest suites that can be rented on home-sharing sites such as Airbnb. The suites include separate entrances and small kitchenettes. A recent survey by TRI Pointe found that 35 percent of young adults say they want to be able to rent out space in their homes, at least occasionally.

“A lot of their motivation for doing that is to make the financial step of buying their home more doable,” says Linda Mamet, vice president of corporate marketing at TRI Pointe.

Source: “New U.S. Homes Make Room for Airbnb Crowd,” The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 22, 2016)