If you’re planning a remodel for your home soon, you’ll want to consider designing with age in place house plans in mind. This has become more popular with many homeowners in recent years and can bring many benefits. Here’s why you should consider it and some tips for incorporating it into your plans.
Age in Place House Plans and Modifications
What does it mean to age in place? This is a strategy that homeowners use in their home renovations to make their homes suitable for them as they grow older. With the correct modifications, your home can be safe and straightforward for you to use for much longer than you’d think.
It’s become popular as the population ages, and people are looking for options other than needing to live in assisted living facilities. The best part is that it’s not too difficult to do. You’ll need to make some more informed choices when you’re renovating and keep the future in mind as you do so. These tips will help you do just that.
Mindful Safety Designs
When renovating with aging in place in mind, you’ll consider what will make your home safer as you grow older. As you age, your safety needs will change. For example, your eyesight may change, or you may need mobility aids to get around.
As such, the way you use your home will change. When making renovations, keep that safety in mind. Will you be able to get around the room safely? Can you reach the light switches if you’re using a wheelchair? These are things that you need to address to make your home ready.
You want to avoid anything that could be a trip hazard, so keep this in mind as you choose. For example, area rugs won’t be ideal as they can easily be tripped on. When changing out flooring, you’ll want to pay special attention to this when it comes to aging in place.
You can choose to use carpet rather than hardwood floors in the home, again to avoid the chance of slipping. If you cannot change the floors, adding a nonskid mat or strips can help reduce the chance of a fall.
Usability of Mobility Aids
If you find yourself using mobility aids as you get older, then you’ll still want to get around your home with them easily. The most obvious change you can make will be adding a stairlift to your stairs, so you can easily get up and down stairs.
There are plenty of other modifications you can make to your home that you may not have thought about. For example, placing light switches down low enough so you can reach them from a wheelchair, or having a low counter to sit at while you prepare meals, will all help a lot.
Door Handle Replacement
This is a relatively easy change to your home, but it can make all the difference. If you find it harder to grip things as you get older, you may struggle with specific door handles. You can avoid this happening by changing them out now.
If you have doorknobs at the moment, change them out for lever-style handles. These will be much easier to manipulate with reduced grip capacity, and you can find many great options on the market right now.
Kitchen and Bathroom Accessibility
If you’re only going to make changes to a couple of rooms in your house, then it should be the kitchen and bathroom. As you grow older, these rooms pose the most risk to you as a homeowner, so plan to make some changes when you renovate.
For example, making your bathroom safer means you’ll be able to use it much longer than you would normally. That’s great for senior citizens, as it allows them to care for themselves more easily. Changes here include:
- Adding grab bars over the bathtub and in the shower.
- Installing a shower chair.
- Replacing the floors with nonslip flooring.
- Creating a no-entry shower, if possible, to avoid tripping.
n your kitchen, again, you’ll want to look at adding nonslip flooring to avoid slipping if it’s wet. A moveable kitchen island can be helpful, too, especially if you’re using mobility aids.
As you grow older, you may find you need brighter lighting in your home, so you’ll need to keep this in mind as you remodel. Pick out light bulbs that give brighter lights when you have lights on. Adding more lights to a room will help with this too.
Be careful where they’re placed, as you don’t want to create more shadows. While moving around at night, you may also want to add night lights to the home. These can come on a timer or with a sensor, so you don’t have to worry about switching them on or off.
If mobility becomes more difficult for you in the future, then you’ll want to look at moving your bedroom onto the main level of your home. That makes it much easier to access as well as this, consider safety in the bedroom, too.
Getting in and out of bed can be difficult, so adding grab bars at the side can be very helpful. Add a landline phone in the bedroom too, near the bed. That will help you have added security should you ever need to call for help.
The Bottom Line
These are just some tips that you’ll want to keep in mind as you plan your home renovation. You may not need these renovations right now, but they will be helpful at some point in the future. Once you’re ready to remodel, you’ll have age in place house plans.