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Granny cottages becoming a more popular choice for senior citizens

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CLEARWATER, FL (WWSB) - When 80-year-old Sheila DeSanto wanted to downsize, she didn't mess around.  DeSanto ended up having a nearly 400 square foot cottage built in the backyard of her son's Clearwater home.

"I think the small size is a big advantage as far as maintenance and cleaning and picking up and keeping track of everything," said DeSanto.

The cottages features a living room, bedroom, bathroom, a little kitchen area, closet space and a porch out front.  DeSanto says the cottage gives her independence where she has her own private space and her son and his family are just feet away if she needs anything.

"It's very nice, I suppose it wouldn't be so nice if we didn't get along," said DeSanto.  "I've got three kids that are all in the area, they all get along I get along with them, so it works out really well."

The mastermind behind these granny cottages is Henry Moseley, president of the Goldsborough Company.  Moseley tells us these cottages are especially ideal for family members who want to remain very close to an elderly parent.

"They sound small, really small but they're not, they're actually much bigger then you might expect" said Moseley.  "They're packed full of amenities, they're very energy efficient buildings.

Joe DeSanto, Sheila's son, says he's thrilled they've decided to go this direction.

"With our busy lives we see her everyday and that's fantastic," said Joe DeSanto.  "We can keep an eye on her but she's still herself out here and has all her autonomy and does what she wants."

There are different rules for the different cities regarding these granny cottages.  For instance, in Clearwater the cottage has to be attached to the home but in other cities they can be detached in the backyard of the property. Moseley says both Sarasota and Manatee Counties do allow these types of cottages.  Price tag ranges from $55,000 to $110,000.  DeSanto says she couldn't be happier with her cottage.

"Absolutely, I have no regrets," said DeSanto.

For more information on these granny cottages you can log onto