Keeping It In the Family – In-law Suite Additions


You can keep your home flexible for aging family members by adding an in-law suite. This addition is a way to give parents, grandparents or older aunts and uncles their own space and independence while keeping them close by to you. It allows you to check on them, as well as involve them as part of your family while still having their own living space.

After you’ve checked all zoning laws for home additions in northern Virginia, you can work with a good, experienced design and build firm. They will work with you to decide the best egress and ingress points. If at all possible, your new family residents should have their own entrance and exit, with as few steps as possible leading to the doorway. When planning the addition, remember that everybody needs their own personal space. Make this theirs by involving them in the decisions. Work with the designer and custom builder to rededicate rarely used spaces, as well as create additions. For example, you can re-purpose your unused formal living room space into part of the in-law suite, whether it’s a sitting room for them or a bedroom. Strive to make sure they have their own full bathroom that is lockable and not always accessible by the rest of the household. This is part of their private space. A wet bar is also helpful, because while it doesn’t give them the full advantage of cooking, it at least lets them have a place to make coffee, wash or rinse dishes and keep a full-size private refrigerator. They should also have access to the communal kitchen. Consider the possibility of separate heating and air conditioning units so that they can control temperature on their own.

The in-law suite will provide a good return on investment when it comes time to sell your home. It’s a value-added home addition that many in the “sandwich generation” will find appealing.