10 things you can do to make your home easier to navigate as you get older
Everyone wants to stay in their home as long as possible. No one wants to go to a nursing home. Many of my clients are a few years from retirement and want to plan a “forever home”. They want a home that looks good now & will function for them as their mobility changes. In addition, many of them are planning on their parents moving in with them. Universal Design, inclusive design, 55+ design, accessible design, forever house and aging in place are all phrases for homes that are ready for us during all levels of independence and mobility.
There are two levels to getting your home ready for the long run. First there are the simple DIY changes. These changes can be done over time as appliances need replacing or as we update our homes. Click on the link below to download Ten Easy Things You Can Do to Maintain Your Lifestyle in Retirement. Another easy change is to embrace technology. We all want to avoid fitting the stereo type of old folks that don’t want to embrace technology. If you haven’t seen the SNL skit about the Amazon Echo, go have a good laugh & see what I mean. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMwz487yG9I On the serious side, technology has an important role in helping keep us out of retirement or nursing homes. Siri, Alexa and other virtual assistants can call someone when we can’t reach the phone or they can remind us to take our medicine. They can tie into other apps that let us see who’s at the door and unlock the door without our getting up. Aging in place longer will depend on us being open to new technology.
The second level is when we need a walker or wheelchair. Renovations are usually needed to keep us functioning in our homes. Some of the changes might be structural like widening doors and hallways or eliminating steps. Since renovations are expensive, we want changes that are attractive and don’t feel institutional like a nursing home. An architect can help transform your home to meet your needs & be more flexible. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have at (706)766-0366.
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