Staying in your own home for as long as medically possible sounds great to most of us, but it can be easy for forget that aging in place is as much as your house as it is about your health. While no one can predict the future, there are certain things we can do now to make life easier down the road. If you’re thinking about remodeling parts of your home – or even just making some updates – doing them in a senior-safe way can help make sure your house is ready as your needs change. Here are six projects – three large and three small – you can do now to give your home an upgrade for today and for the future.
- Replacing Door Knobs: Swapping doorknobs that have to be turned for lever-style door handles can make a big difference when it comes to ease of going between rooms or getting in or out of your house, especially if you’re faced with arthritis, joint stiffness, or mobility issues.
- Updating Lighting: Having the right lighting in your house – installing dimmer lights for late-night bathroom trips or brighter lights in the kitchen or even just swapping out fixtures to add additional light – can help with vision issues and help prevent falls.
- Installing Grab Bars: No one likes to think about grab bars, but installing them now will save you an emergency later. Don’t let your pride get in the way of your safety… you certainly don’t want to have to be rescued from the shower.
- Move the Laundry Room:Many older homes have basement laundry rooms, which means going up and down a lot of steps while holding laundry baskets and clothes. That’s a fall hazard whether you are 12 or 92! Moving your laundry room to the first floor (or the second floor, if you don’t have a ranch) even if it means taking up some closet space in a spare bedroom, can make doing laundry safer, more comfortable, and more convenient.
- Replacing Flooring: Hardwood floors and plush carpets both have their place, but they also both have their own issues when it comes to mobility. Consider what challenges you might be likely to face and pick an option that’s best for you. If you’re going with hardwood, be careful about thresholds and try to avoid area rugs. If you’re choosing carpet, look for something smoother and with a lower pile.
- Adding Accessibility Features: Do you have to walk up 12 steps to get to your front door? Does the step out of your back door look like a cliff? Do your interior steps have handrails? No one likes to think about needing a ramp or additional supports, but considering those challenges now will save you a headache later.
Your local TruBlue technician can help with many of these projects and whatever other small or large renovations you’re planning. Find your local TruBlue today: https://www.trubluehousecare.com/locations/.