Some seniors have nice homes, but not a lot of ready cash. Others are renters, and not particularly comfortable with that regular money drain. And there are a few of us still living with the kids to get over a bad patch, without intending to make the arrangement permanent; they’ve got their lives to live, after all. Most of us left the idea of roommates behind when we left college – but now it has its attractions.
For a homeowner, a roommate can help with finances in a couple of ways: the arrangement can provide extra income, and it can allow you to “barter” for services that you would have to pay for otherwise. – Services like a ride to the doctor now and then, and having someone to help with the shopping or the yard work. In effect, the roommate option lets seniors monetize what is probably their biggest asset – their home – without more drastic solutions involving a reverse mortgage or a home-equity line of credit.