Forever young: The adult-lifestyle bungalow

Kitchen

Steadily increasing in popularity as more and more baby boomers retire, adult-lifestyle bungalows provide a desirable "next step" investment.

So why are these bungalows all the rage among older audiences? Although today's boomers are for the most part active and in great health compared with generations before them, many realize further down the road they may not be so fortunate. Flights of stairs may become tedious, yard work may become laborious and the overall upkeep of a large single-family home may become a strain. A move to an open concept home with master bedroom, den and laundry room on the main floor are just some of the features that can help prolong independent living well into senior years.

More and more home builders are adding bungalows to their mix of models with specific features like walk-in showers, easy to reach cabinets and wide entrances designed to accommodate potential walkers or wheelchairs. Downsizing no longer means sacrificing luxury, as all the bells and whistles can be added to many of these models. Floor plans come standard with cathedral and vaulted ceilings to open up the home, often creating the illusion of more square footage.

Planned pockets of adult-lifestyle bungalows are also being built in communities where amenities and shops are short distances away. Integrated into neighbourhoods of single-family homes, boomers can still be a part of a young community.

Planning ahead and investing early in this style of home can only bring added benefits down the road when boomers shift into fixed income retirement. As the demand increases, so does the value of the home as builders are already showing signs they will be unable to keep up with future demand. With the number of Canadians over 65 set to double by 2036, the adult-lifestyle bungalow is sure to be a hot commodity of the future.