AARP has developed a nine-point checklist to help families -- and older family members in particular -- achieve success:

1. Prepare your home. Does your home work for everyone, young and old? Can your house accommodate someone who might find climbing stairs a challenge or who might need a walk-in shower or a single-handle faucet?

2. Prepare your family. Have regular family conferences to discuss issues before they become problems. Before moving in together, ask family members of all ages to talk about how they expect life to change, including what they want, what they are excited about and what they're nervous about.

3. A place for everyone and everyone in their place. Decide how the living space in your home will be used.

4. Let them live their own lives. This is important whether older household members are highly active and independent or if they are being cared for. Opportunities to see friends, continue activities they enjoy and have downtime are important at any age.

5. Get in a groove. Consistency will help minimize the inevitable disruptions. Keep routines such as mealtimes and bedtime rituals.

6. Make a play date. Facilitate grandparent-grandchild interactions.

7. Don't get caught in the middle. Often, parents have trouble trying to please the older and younger generations. You can't be expected to take care of everyone if you are running on empty.

8. Be realistic. Only so much furniture can fit in a house. People can be expected to change only so much over a lifetime. Teens will want to hang out with their grandparents only so much. Elders will be willing to handle only a certain volume level on the stereo. There are only 24 hours in a day. And you can be in only one place at a time, no matter how much everyone needs you.

9. Make memories. Take advantage of the opportunities you have with multiple generations in the household. Have fun and treasure the time.

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