Online search habits reveal a demand for dual living properties

Gone are the days when the kids are booted out the door the moment they finish school. They’re staying home for longer — and the grandparents are moving in too. Our online search habits have revealed we want houses with room for the extended family.

Jan and Gary Harvey are selling their house, which has dual living capabilities. Source: News Corp Australia

Gone are the days when the kids are booted out the door the moment they finish school. They’re staying home for longer — and the grandparents are moving in too.

Our online search habits have uncovered a growing desire for houses suited to dual living, as multiple generations begin to live under the one roof.
Real­estate.­com.­­au data has revealed Queensland’s top keyword search terms last year for browsing houses online, with variants of searches relating to dual living appearing multiple times in the list.

Gary and Jan Harvey in the dual living part of their home. Source: News Corp Australia

While it is hardly surprising the top terms were pool (499,122 searches), swimming pool (340,579) and waterfront (96,005), variations of granny flat (64,372), dual living (54,807), and duplex (50,108) also appeared in the top 10.
Place Woolloongabba director James Curtain said he had seen a rise in the popularity of dual-living properties over the past few years, and he didn’t expect it to disappear any time soon.
“Teenagers are staying home for longer — they financially need to — so parents are assisting, but you still need that level of separation,” Mr Curtain said.
REA Group chief economist Nerida Conisbee agreed that children were staying home longer — sometimes with their own families — and that older generations were moving in with their children.

The main part of the house at 53 Marriott St, Coorparoo. Source: Supplied

However, The Demographics Group’s managing director, demographer Bernard Salt, said multiple generations moving in with one another was a result of “Australian society evolving and splintering”.

Bernard Salt speculated a cultural shift contributed to the increased interest in dual living. Source: Supplied

“The old model of mum, dad and the kids (living together) … (is) still very popular (but) seems to be evolving and changing,” Mr Salt said.
“I think the influence of migrant groups like Greeks, Italians, et cetera, have introduced the idea of multiple generations sharing the same premises.”
Mr. Salt said while property affordability was a factor, he believed a cultural shift that resulted in more relaxed parent-child relationships could have contributed to the trend.
“It was different two generations ago, people wanted to get out of their parents’ houses,” he said.
“There was more conflict between Baby Boomers and 20-somethings with their parents about living with a partner.
“When that became not an issue they stayed home longer.
“Now, some people want to live as extended family, some people want to have their Millennials living at home.”

The downstairs dual living area of 53 Marriott St. Source: Supplied

McGrath Paddington agent Reuben Packer-Hill is marketing a property with two self-contained flats at 19 Taringa Pde, Indooroopilly, and said homes with dual-living capabilities often attracted “20-25 per cent more buyer interest”.
“Rising household costs and the lack of good quality retirement options in the suburbs, has influenced multi-generational families to consider moving in (together),”
Mr Packer-Hill said.
“Some of the benefits include saving on mortgage payments, helping with the care of younger children and enjoying the company of one another.”

McGrath Paddington agent Reuben Packer-Hill said dual living properties receive up to 25 per cent more interest. Source: Supplied

Jan and Gary Harvey are selling their house at 53 Marriott St, Coorparoo, which is set up for dual living.
The couple renovated the house when their children were teenagers, and they were sure to make sure it had a self-contained bottom floor.
In the years that followed, one of their children moved back into the space with his wife for six months, and on another occasion they had another family move in while they were building a house.
“They had separate side access so they could get on with their life and we could get on with ours, but we could come together when we wanted to,” Mrs Harvey said.