Here at Cabinets & Designs the concept of “multigenerational” is an important one. From a design standpoint we have talked about multigenerational and transgenerational design before; it’s sometimes referred to as universal design as well.
Many of our clients are multi-generational customers, who grew up in homes that we helped design. When a parent or grandparent refers us to the next generation—that’s the highest compliment we can receive, and we are grateful to our many clients who have invited Cabinets & Designs into their homes and families.
Multigeneration Home: Concept
The idea behind renovating a home for more than one generation is simple: families who have more than one generation living under one roof must accommodate a wide range of needs. When ages range from young children to retirees, grandparents, or even great-grandparents, a home needs to be functional and safe for everyone. The idea of a “universal” design used to mean implementing sterile, almost institutional solutions—handles in the tub is one example, or hospital-style furniture for another. Today, through a combination of industry innovation and market demand, universal design is becoming a seamless, stylish option for homeowners who don’t want to sacrifice beauty for functionality.
Multigeneration Home: Design
So what does a multi-generational home look like from a design standpoint? It involves making changes that accommodate a variety of ability levels in high-use areas like bathrooms and kitchens. Here are some examples:
• U- or L-shaped kitchens with islands: Wide and free of barriers, multiple work stations can be set up for users of varying ages and abilities.
• Smooth cooktops with front-mounted controls: Can be set to shorter heights for residents in wheelchairs
• Raised dishwashers and side-by-side refrigerators: Allow for less bending for those with limited mobility
• Toilet paper holder grab bars: In the bathroom these bars are sleek and contemporary in design—no one would guess at their second practical function
• Single lever faucets, pull out steps, chair-height toilets
Those are just a few ideas from transgenerational and multigenerational designers that are making their way into homes across America.
We invite you to stop into our showroom and learn more about multi-generational design from our team of talented, professional designers.