Research shows that, in developed countries, the number of older people is growing much faster than any other age group. By the year 2050 the number of people older than 60 will exceed the number of those younger than 15. Having this in mind, it is clear that nursing homes are going to be crowded and much more expensive in the future. So, instead of being thrown into one, propose to your children or grandchildren a different solution – a “Granny pod”.
What’s a “granny pod”?
Granny pods are pre-made, or prefabricated cottages that can be installed in the backyard of any home. They are, usually one bedroom or two bedroom apartments, with fully equipped kitchen and bathroom. You can even say that granny pods are medical cottages, because they are customized to fulfill all the needs that older people can have (easy accessible toilets, first aid kits, ramps, defibrillators, etc.).
Video surveillance provides 24 hours a day monitoring of the tenant, so the family will know if something goes wrong. This surveillance system is usually installed at the ankle level, in order to give a tenant enough privacy. If needed, various other high-tech features can be installed. For example, there is a system that keeps track of the blood pressure, heart rate and other medical parameters and then shares that information with the resident’s family and doctor.
In terms of costs you have two options.
The first one is to buy and install a pre-made cottage and transform it into a granny pod by equipping it with everything needed for its future tenant. High quality one bedroom cottages can be found at price lower than 40,000 dollars and costs of its installation and equipping shouldn’t be more than 50,000 – 60,000 dollars.
The second option is to buy completely furnished and customized granny pod. They usually cost around 120,000 dollars. So, this option will cost you more, but it is less time consuming and you wouldn’t have to worry about furnishing or equipping it.
If you think that this is expensive, you should know that staying in a nursing home will cost you between 81,000 and 92,000 dollars, depending on what kind of accommodation you want (private, or semiprivate).
First and the most important benefit of having a granny pod instead of going into a nursing home is that you are close to your love ones, literally in their backyard.
As you’ve seen earlier in the article, granny pods are much cheaper than nursing homes, so there’s benefit number two.
Some would say that residents in the nursing homes will have a full and constant attention and that the hygiene is better there than in the backyard cottage. Well, hygiene has to be at the highest level, whether you are in the nursing home or in granny pod. Having in mind the granny pods aren’t huge structures with hundreds of rooms, keeping them clean isn’t going to be much of a struggle. I don’t think that you will need more than two hours a week to keep yours clean; and, as people who are taking care of domestic cleaning in Sydney area said to me – you can always hire professionals to make it spotless. When it comes to attention, modern technology development gave us the possibility to monitor our older ones 24 hours a day, without need to be with them all the time.
For those who have increased medical needs, but still want to keep their privacy, independence and want to be near their family members, granny pod is, definitely, the best solution.
Written by Marie Nieves, Editor, SmoothDecorator