Many seniors face a difficult decision as they age and their current home no longer matches their needs. Some seniors explore the housing market only to find that moving out of their current home and into a new one could be a hassle. One of the best ways to make your current home into your dream home is by renovating in place. How can you modify your home to make it safer and more livable for you and your loved ones as you age?
How to Remodel Your Home
Before you get started, you should investigate local grants and government programs that are available through Area Agency on Aging programs. There are also non-profits and other programs, like Rebuilding Together, that help connect homeowners with repairs, home modifications and other renovations that can help seniors maintain their health, safety and independence.
Remodeling Ideas for Seniors
- Expand doorways so that they can accommodate various mobility devices, like wheelchairs or walkers. This can vary in cost, but generally it is $400-600 per doorway that is widened.
- Install grab bars in your bathrooms to prevent falls. These are one of the most affordable ways that you can make your home safer, as they are useful for seniors and anyone who might have mobility challenges. Some organizations also offer free installation of grab bars for seniors in need.
- Install lever-style doorknobs to replace your traditional round doorknobs. These are easier to grasp than traditional doorknobs, and they can also be easier to use for seniors who struggle to make twisting motions without pain. These doorknobs can be installed on your own or with the help of a professional.
- Tile and hardwood floors can be tough when you struggle with walking steadily and avoiding slips and falls. Consider installing a slip-resistant material, like bamboo, cork, linoleum or vinyl to lower the risk of an accident. If you cannot replace all of your flooring, focus on high-traffic areas.
- Install a wheelchair ramp outside of your home that can make it easier to get in and out without stairs.
- Lower your kitchen countertops if you spend time in a wheelchair or they are currently too high. Depending on your kitchen, this could be about $5,000 to accomplish. However, it’s money well spent if it makes you more comfortable and able to stay in your home for longer.
If you want expert advice on who can help you, contact the National Association of Home Builders to look for a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist near you.
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