Multigenerational housing is becoming more and more popular as the American culture continues to grow and change. As the baby boomers continue into their golden years, many of their children are finding they’re more comfortable with their parents living with them yet again as opposed to living in assisted living facilities. Many households contain up to four generations of a family at any time. With so many people under one roof, how do these households continue to run efficiently?

1. Set Boundaries.

With so many people living under one roof it’s important to set boundaries. Setting rules and guidelines for the household that the majority of the household can agree on will help to prevent miscommunications and ensure that everyone is on the same page. Setting boundaries will also help with the issue of privacy. Privacy can be difficult to come by in multigenerational living, but with boundaries set, privacy isn’t so unattainable.

2. Divide Up Chores and Responsibilities

Divvying up chores and responsibilities can help prevent confrontations among members of the household. Additionally, dividing the chores up between the members of the household will keep the house clean and prevent clutter.

3. Respect

It’s important to remember that the generational gaps aren’t only about age, but about culture as well. Each generation grows to have different views and ideas about how things should be done and it’s important to respect these differences. While perhaps the most basic concept when it comes to multigenerational living, it’s easy to forget about the cultural differences between generations and become frustrated.

4. Set Aside Time for Discussing Family Problems

Set aside time every week or month as necessary to discuss problems or conflicts that have come up since the last meeting. This will also allow for time to discuss questions family members may have and reevaluate any rules or boundaries that aren’t working for the family.

5. Be Patient

Having patience and being flexible with the other members of the household is the best way to avoid family conflicts. Remember that generational differences can be stressful on all ages of the family. Patience and flexibility will make everyone’s lives easier and will keep healthy familial relationships strong.

By Alexis Breitkreutz, an analyst for Move New Homes