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Design Considerations to Make Your Home Age-Friendly
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Aging In Your Home
In years past, once it became difficult to live at home, a senior either moved in with family or into a nursing home. Now many seniors are saying, loud and clear, that they want to stay in their homes. A house is full of memories. It is a welcome respite and a loved place. However, it can also bring unexpected challenges.

Overview
Aging in Place is quite possible with appropriate modification to the living environment in a persons house, apartment, condominium, or manufactured home with a focus on safety and security.

Here are specific issues that you may want to consider working on if you truly desire to age in your own home:

Bathrooms Bathrooms are the number one spot in the home for accidents. Whats important is that many of those accidents can be avoided. Think about the accessibility of your bathtub. As you age, stepping into a tub can become challenging, and sometimes unsafe. You may need to lower the sides, or do away with them altogether. You may need to replace the entire unit, or simply install a grab bar for safety.

Kitchen Kitchens have changed tremendously in the last decade. Gleaming countertops in new materials, wonderful new floors, modern appliances, upgrading a kitchen can be invigorating. Remodeling the kitchen due to lost mobility is something else entirely. It is crucial to renovate with accessibility and efficiency in mind.

Stairs/Lifts/Elevators As toddlers first learn to negotiate stairs, they are excited and their parents are amazed and inspired. That feeling of excitement and victory lasts for a while. Then we spend most of our lives taking stairs without much thought. However, as we age or if we lose mobility, stairs take on quite a different meaning. Stairs can be tough to face. Split-level homes and entries with multiple levels present an intimidating challenge.

Laundry Laundry rooms are notoriously difficult areas for people with limited mobility. They tend to be cramped, often pushed in corners, stuck behind something, in the recesses of the bathroom, or buried down in basements. Access may be marginal or perhaps has become impossible. For those who like to be in control of their own lives, and laundry, we can help.

Entry Entryways are a welcome area to greet friends, and where we return home. Could your entry be improved for safety or efficiency? Exterior stair entries can present difficulties, split-level entrances have inherent challenges, and turns and hallways may be awkward. Designs that were once acceptable may now be impossible. Negotiating stairs or doorways might be dangerous.

By Ron Mitchell, Terry Raisio and Deb Mitchell, of Safely Senior