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ADU's. Are they for you?

Updated: Aug 12

Recently I read, “Where you choose to live at age 65 won’t necessarily be where you will choose to live at 85.” True enough. But my suggestion is to find a place to live at age 65 where you have a shot at remaining until age 85 as safely and comfortably as possible. Not many of us do this, and we wind up becoming trapped in our homes or having to leave prematurely because we just can’t manage our daily tasks anymore. But, we all say that we want to stay in our current home as long as possible. So, our advice is to work on how you can make that happen rather than select or remain in a home that has stairs everywhere, cramped bathrooms, and key function areas on different floors.

One option among many is an accessory dwelling unit (ADU). An ADU is a small dwelling or apartment that can be created on your current home property or that of a relative, for example. It can be a separate small dwelling, a dwelling attached to a home (an addition), or a full apartment within a larger home (such as a converted basement or other space). In all cases, it should be designed with a step-free entrance, a usable bathroom, and other key features. Click HERE for more information.


While they are not zero-cost, they are more affordable than the annual expenses of life care communities, assisted living facilities or a brand new traditional build. Living in an accessory dwelling unit can also help us maintain family and community connections and allow easier paid or unpaid in-home caregiving. Their viability is improved with the availability of home and community-based services, such as home health.


Our friends at AARP created a great ADU guide that can be downloaded HERE.


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