An ADU is just a fancy term for an in-law suite or granny flat. It has all the essentials, including a bathroom, kitchen, and sleeping space. A granny pod (or flat) is a tiny home built or placed on the same property as the home of someone who will look after the occupant.
Having their own living space gives the senior some privacy while the proximity to the caregiver makes it easier for them to monitor their loved one's health and safety. Some find the name granny pod a bit flippant. But the other names we’re dealing with here such a in-law apartment, care cottage or “accessory dwelling unit aren’t the greatest either. So we’re sticking with granny pod. Apologies.
Here’s why granny pods are so great—despite the name.
These tiny home-like structures have everything your parent needs to lead an independent life, yet the structure is small enough to fit in most backyards. Your parents can live in their own space, but they’re still close to home.
A bedroom/living room
Many pods also come equipped with monitoring systems and other advanced technologies that allow parents to live safely in the structure. They offer more privacy and independence than living with family. But the elderly person is still living with family. A granny pod gets set up on the property of a larger family home, and is hooked into the existing utilities. Granny pods are typically 400-500 square feet in space—about the size of a modest studio—with a kitchen, living room, bath and bedroom area.
This gives the family member space and
independence while keeping them near by. For many seniors, it’s a
better solution than either moving in with family or moving into
an assisted living community.
They’re great for mobility issues. If the elderly person has mobility issues, a granny pod is ideal. There are no stairs to navigate—everything is on one floor—and the space is small, so the senior doesn’t have to navigate long hallways or large rooms. It’s an easily manageable space.
They can be further safety-proofed. Granny pods are a subset of tiny houses specifically designed for older adults. That means wide hallways for wheelchair access, grab bars and handicapped-accessible bathrooms, thick-carpeted floors, and bright lighting for visibility, among other features.
Medical devices can be added. Granny pods often come equipped with automatic external defibrillators, in-home pill dispensers, first aid kits, and other amenities to ensure that if any medical issues come up, the senior and the caretaker will be prepared.
Smart home features make life easier. Many granny pods have state-of-the-art smart home features that help make life more comfortable. These include automated temperature control—this is great for seniors, who become more sensitive to hot and cold as they age—as well as motion-activated lights so seniors don’t have to fumble for a light switch.
Granny pods are a great solution for seniors who want to maintain their independence while staying as close to family as possible. They’re specifically designed to meet the needs of seniors, and are definitely worth a look for yourself or a loved one.
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