Remodeling Your Home to Age in Place
The baby boom is becoming a silver tsunami. AARP reminds us that a third of the population is over 50 and that by 2030 — just over a decade from now — a fifth will be 65 or older. Those demographics aren’t the only thing changing. Boomers have always done things their own way, and as they age, more of them are looking to age in place. ArDan Construction looks at the opportunities and concerns that trend presents for Arizona homeowners.
What is Aging in Place?
Growing older used to mean leaving one’s home for an assisted living facility, a nursing home, or senior housing designed for accessibility. Aging in place simply means staying put in one’s own home — somewhere familiar and comforting — rather than pulling up stakes. There are financial, social, health, and psychological benefits to this approach. However, proper planning is absolutely vital. For homeowners approaching retirement age, home remodeling can open up the possibility of living out your golden years at home.
Key Design Considerations for an Aging-in-Place Remodel
When we’re designing to help an individual or couple age in place, the usual remodeling considerations — beauty, function, quality, and structural soundness — are joined by a series of health concerns for which a home remodeling contractor should plan.
As we age, we lose muscle mass, strength, and flexibility. Our stamina isn’t what it once was. We’re less mobile, more accident-prone, and may need assistance getting around our homes and performing everyday tasks. Renovating with these things in mind ensures that all the pieces are in place when you need them.
For a bathroom remodel, this can mean switching a tub with a walk-in shower, and installing grab bars for easier access. In the kitchen, it can mean adjusting cabinet height and counter depth for easier access. Throughout the home, it means limiting trip and fall hazards, and ensuring that you can access everything you need whether you’re on foot, using a walker, or confined to a wheelchair. Layouts and use of space that minimize maintenance are helpful, as are features like ramps that limit your chances of slips and falls.
Your renovation can even include moving a master suite from the upper floor to the ground floor to limit the use of stairs. You may also wish to provide a space where a relative, live-in health aide, or other caregiver can have some privacy when the day’s work is done.
Alternatives to Aging in Place
Maybe you’ve waited longer than you should to prepare your home for your golden years, or perhaps you’d like to be closer to family without getting in their hair. ArDan Construction can offer alternatives, including home additions if you’re taking in an older family member, or building a casita that keeps your parents close by while preserving their autonomy.
To better understand your options, we invite you to schedule a home remodeling consultation with ArDan Construction. We provide general contracting, home renovations, service & maintenance, and a variety of other services to homeowners throughout the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas.