by McKenzie Stalkenburg


One of the most important decisions we make in life is where and how to live. A home should provide a respite in life that is conducive to our relationships and families. Different stages in life can mean different homes or living situations are preferable. Where we live, how big our home is, who we live with, how we decorate and what activities we foster in the home, all make a difference.

For simplicity, the three phases this article will look at are at the points of coupling, having a family and becoming empty nesters. Granted these times in life may not be exactly the same for everyone, but there is probably a correlation, no matter who you are.



At some point in your earlier years, another special person will probably enter your life. Most couples will eventually make the decision to go to a next step and share a home. One issue can be the new norm of relationships that form over longer distances. The advent of online dating might have one coupling with someone in Chicago, while she lives in Phoenix. Such situations have created flexible households where cohabitation is the norm.

Instead of waiting to move in together after marriage, houses are now chosen where couples can spend time living together and get to know one another first. Such homes are often smaller and flexible for long distance couples visiting and spending time together. Most times, renting is the primary form of obtaining housing until couples figure out where they wish to live together permanently.



A home for a family needs far more consideration. Usually, this is the place where roots are put down. The home is more active, typically larger and requires consideration of family interaction and activities. A family will put the consideration of the happiness of their children above most everything else. Now location matters even more. Access to schools, safety and family activities prevail.

With expanded size, usually comes the need for outdoor space in the form of a back yard where everything from gardening to caring for pets can take place. Many online resources, like this website cover the intricacies of such a home decision.


Empty Nesters


The large house was great when it was full but once the kids have left, simplicity becomes the foremost desire of empty nesters and retirees. Now a smaller size facilitates less housework, smaller expenses and proximity to activities that are embraced by older adults. The move also helps shed unnecessary belongings before the movers arrive, which becomes a very freeing act of moving towards minimalism. The smaller house now accommodates smaller needs.

Whatever stage of life one finds themselves, these tend to be the main concerns for housing. The goal is a house conducive to the lifestyle at that time and creating an atmosphere that fosters happiness and enhances relationship goals.

Which stage are you?