What Exactly Is a Mother-In-Law Suite?

rwrAs Americans continue to live longer, it is becoming increasingly common for families in our country to join together to share a living space.

However, before you get turned off by the prospect of having your mother-in-law (or any other relative) sharing your home with you, read below to see why building a mother-in-law suite can actually be a win-win for everyone involved.

The 411

The mother in law suite is appropriately named because these kinds of home additions are typically used to accommodate in-laws who move into their adult children’s homes at a certain age. Commonly seen as a secondary suite built on the property of a single dwelling, the mother in law suite is usually incorporated into a home as an addition, or by converting a basement (or other extra room) over a garage into a small apartment-like space.

Some mother in law suites might include a full kitchen, complete with their own electrical, plumbing and HVAC units, while other areas in the space feature a bathroom, bedroom and general living area.

Mother in law suites come in a number of sizes and can be built or added-on to many locations on a property. And, take note; there is actually no rule about whether or not your mother in law has to be the actual resident living in the suite. In fact, some homeowners use mother in law suites as small income properties by renting them out to others.

Factors to Consider

If you’re thinking about building a mother in law suite, there are several aspects to consider:

  1. Size and Location. The first step in building your mother in law suite is deciding where to build it. This decision includes determining how big you can make the addition. This also will help you figure out the type and style of the addition.
  2. Building Codes and Zoning. Conduct early research about the process regarding local building codes and your community’s rules for zoning to ensure you can legally build the addition.
  3. Consider the Resident. When building a mother in law suite, you must keep future residents in mind. For instance, if it is for an actual relative or in-law, then he or she may need special amenities to make navigating the space easier. This could include wider doorways and hallways to accommodate wheelchairs or walkers, specially equipped showers or baths with guardrails or non-slip flooring.

Choose a Home Addition Contractor for Your Mother in Law Suite

House plans with mother in law suites have become more popular over the last few years. And the added benefit to creating an additional living space in the home  – or elsewhere on the property – is that the space is a great selling piece when it comes time to eventually sell your home.

When building a mother in law suite, your biggest and most important decision will be the home addition contractor you choose. At Republic West Remodeling, we are experienced at building home additions, including mother in law suites, so you can trust us to do the best job possible with all of the expertise and knowledge we have.

Jim Weisman (669 Posts)

Jim Weisman founded RW Remodeling in 2011 after co-founding Republic West in 1995. Jim’s strong belief in the importance of ethical standards, honest communication and quality work make RW Remodeling a unique home remodeling company. For more than 19 years, Jim Weisman and his team have been proudly delivering what their customers want; their dream home.