When seniors love their home and don’t want to move no matter how old they get, it’s time to start making changes. These changes will allow them to stay in their home no matter what their physical limitations may become. Ideas of what can be done to a home so that seniors can age in place are becoming more and more popular. The aging population in the United States is rising and seniors are projected to reach 98 million by 2060.
Residential Design for Aging in Place
Aging in place refers to a person in their golden years when they can live in the residence of their choosing and are still able to access the things they require and are used to in their daily life. Aging changes everyone. It doesn’t matter how fit we are and how much we take care of our bodies, eat right and exercise. Aging changes us regardless of all this. These changes include:
• poor eyesight
• a reduction in muscle mass that leads to less strength
• diminished endurance, mobility and agility
• decreased flexibility
• bones become more fragile and there is an increase in accidents
• less balance when walking
• reduced hearing
The changes will all occur. Some may happen at age 50 and the rest when you turn 70. If you can plan for these changes you will be better prepared to take on the challenges that will come your way. Aging in place well means planning in advance for any future changes. Seniors can stay in their home as long as they wish with the knowledge and experience that a home designer can provide. Designers make sure every detail has been taken care of.
Aging in Place Home Assessment & Remodeling Checklist
• General. Spaces designed for accessibility and safety should follow some overall rules and should apply to any room. These include open floor plans with limited obstructions, larger windows, no-step entrances, wider doorways (36 inches min.), lever-style door handles and ramp installation. Areas rugs should be avoided to prevent tripping and lighting should be increased.
• Kitchen. Cabinets should be easy to reach with large drawers, adjusting the height of the sink, shallow sink, hands-free faucet and D-shaped cabinet pulls.
• Bathroom. Bathrooms are an important part of the design plan. Adjust the height of the toilet and install a grab bar, install grab bars in the shower/tub, shower seat, slip-resistant flooring, anti-slip coating in the tub/shower with a handheld showerhead. Better yet, a walk-in shower/tub.
• Laundry room. Front load washer and dryer that are raised above the floor 12-15 inches, lower upper cabinets and pull-down shelving.
• Bedroom. Low-profile beds make getting in and out of bed easier and safer. Installation of a bed rail with nightstands at the same height as the bed and pull-down closet rods.
Aging in Place Remodeling & More in Redwood City, Foster City, Palo Alto, Saratoga, Cupertino, Los Gatos, Sunnyvale, Campbell, Loyola, Monte Sereno, Mountain View, Santa Clara & Greater San Jose, California
If you’re ready to take steps to age in place well, contact Future Vision Remodeling to get started. We can design spaces for seniors to live independently and with dignity right in their own home. Give us a call today!