As the population ages, there is an increased need for age-friendly home renovations. With the trend of more and more seniors choosing to stay in their homes and remain independent as long as possible, it's shocking to find a report that 85% of seniors did nothing to prepare their home for the shifting needs. For most people in retirement, the problem is that they don't know where to start. Here are a few tips on remodelling your home to better suit the needs of the elderly.
Overcome the stairs
Mobility issues that arise during the senior years may cause your loved ones to experience difficulty when climbing up and down the stairs. For short flights of stairs, you can add a small ramp your loved one can use for a safer step, however, if your parents decide to stay in a two-story building, consider some of the chair lift options.
Automate the lighting
Installing automated lights can prevent tripping and bumping injuries, since seniors may not always find the manual switch as they make their way from one room to another. Your loved ones will also benefit from automated lighting in front of the house for both safety and security reasons. With an illuminated front yard, coming home after dark will be much easier. These automated systems can be set to a timer, sensor-actuated, or controlled via a smartphone app.
Install the curbless shower
A feature widely used in upscale hotels, a bathroom floor that continues straight into a walk-in shower stall can be a great benefit to your elderly loved ones. Thanks to newly developed waterproof membranes and simple carpentry, this renovation won't break the bank. Apart from easier entry, a curbless shower allows for much easier maintenance. And if the time comes to sell, keep in mind that a report from Zillow real estate marketplace found that homes with curbless shower stalls sell for 4.6 more and 38 days faster than the average listings.
Make the interior pleasant
By the time the owners retire or get nearer their golden years, most homes look dated, even if kept in pristine condition. A few simple changes in features and décor can transform the home for your loved ones into a vibrant and enjoyable place that will become a site of many cheerful family gatherings. Start from easier upgrades like window treatments, rugs, and furniture, and consider placing a few burners with aromatic soy melts throughout the house. These aromatic blocks will quickly fill any room with reinvigorating fragrances, while the flicker of the tea light flame will add warmth and ambiance to any setting.
Create an outdoor garden space
While the safety is important, an age-friendly home should also include features that promote your loved one’s health, wellbeing and happiness. An outdoor garden will provide your seniors a place to relax and get some physical exercise while watering the plants, weeding the flower beds, or tending to a small garden of edibles. Many seniors develop an interest in growing fruit or beekeeping as their pastime.
Set up a guest room
Visitors often drop by to talk and socialize with their senior family members, so your loved ones might appreciate having a guest room where their kids and grandkids can stay overnight or take a quick nap after helping them out with gardening or housekeeping. Since setting up a room takes more than just picking the wall paint shade, make sure to involve your loved ones in decorating. In addition, a furnished guest room allows a family member or a caregiver to stay for overnight care.
A senior-friendly home remodel provides a fresh environment that can lift your loved one’s spirits and spark new interests and opportunities to pursue well into their golden years.
By Diana Smith