Home is where the heart is, so it’s no surprise that most people want to remain in their own home long after retirement. Unfortunately, the harsh reality is that living independently at home can become more difficult with each passing year, especially if a spouse passes away.
If you are looking into aging in place for either yourself or a loved one, there are several ways to make it easier on everyone involved. In today’s blog we discuss some home modifications you can make in preparation for living independently well into your senior years. The good news is, these modifications are much cheaper than assisted living communities and their ever-rising healthcare costs!
Each of these modifications comes directly from a livability survey performed by the AARP, which surveyed residents age 50 and older in 11 metropolitan areas across the US, the closest to us being Philadelphia, PA (whose survey actually covered residents aged 45-plus).
Here are the top five home modifications requested by Pennsylvania residents:
- Bathroom Modifications – A bathroom renovation was the top request among surveyed participants. Some bathroom features that would make life simpler include installing handrails or grab bars, higher toilet seats, and non-slip tile. Additional features we’ve installed in other Lancaster, PA homes to help with aging in place include walk-in showers, large doors or openings, and more.
- Medical Emergency Response Systems – Installing medical emergency response systems is another great way to help us age in place. They can put your mind at ease in the event of a fall, a power outage, or if extreme weather strikes the area.
- Lighting Improvements – Stairways and exterior lighting are typically the areas where we look at making lighting improvements. You are susceptible to a fall down the stairs at any age, but it certainly becomes more likely as we grow older. Improved lighting can play a significant role in stairway safety.
- Bathroom, Bedroom or Kitchen Additions – Minimizing stairway use is another great way to age in place. By adding a bathroom, bedroom or even a kitchen to your first floor, you can enjoy the benefits of not having to travel up and down stairs to eat, sleep, or use the facilities.
- Easy Access Accommodations – Adding ramps or chairlifts for easier access within the home rounds out our list of aging in place home modification ideas.
Aging in place is possible with some forethought and a call to the team at Norman Graham Builders. We can help with any of the ideas listed here, or help explore alternative solutions to fit your unique situation. We’re available at 717-656-7336 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.