Spring is my favorite time of year. It is a time for new beginnings, a time for us to declutter, and a time for us to start thinking about the future. Although there are many renovations that can be done to a home to make it safer to stay in as we age it is important to start the process somewhere. Spring cleaning is the perfect time to begin the process and thinking about making your home safer to grow old in. The warmer weather makes it the perfect time to organize, arrange, and renovate the space for your future.
Accidental falls are the number one injury faced by aging homeowners. Falls that occur because of environmental factors are easily avoided when proper precautions are taken. The chores that we can accomplish on our own around our homes safely decreases significantly as our physical and cognitive abilities lessen. These changes happen naturally as we age. Even the most independent adults will slowly start to need assistance around the home in order to safely age in place. Activities such as washing dishes, doing laundry, and self-care are things that older individuals are able to do while living on their own however, more advanced chores will require outside support.
Certain issues plague us as we age. Not only do we become weaker and have less energy, our vision and memory start to fail. As these more advanced impairments occur our needs to continue living in our homes will change. While you are spring cleaning it is crucial to begin to think about the factors that will change and limit you down the road. This is a perfect time to donate excess furniture and knick-knack items that have been collected. Increasing open space by removing the excess allows for better mobility and decreases the number of tripping hazards.
Eliminating items from your home can be difficult. It is important to keep in mind throughout the process that not everything needs to be gotten rid of immediately. It is a process that will occur over the course of time while you wish to remain in your home and living independently. For now, start the process by donating, selling, gifting, or discarding those items you are sure of. If you no longer have a twin sized bed you no longer have a need for twin sized sheets. Start simple this spring.
The time to start thinking about your future starts today. Most of us wish to stay in our homes as long as we can safely do so. With that in mind future renovations should be completed in a manner that considers aging. Age in place contractors specialize in creating spaces that are safe for older homeowners discreetly. Renovations that consider aging in place are most often hardly recognizable. Some of which include:
- Custom closets that add storage and organization without the need to reach above your head
- Shelving for the kitchen & bath that easily slide in and out
- Increased lighting fixtures throughout the home – lamps are discouraged as they present a tripping hazard
- Hardwood flooring, low piled carpet, and slip-resistant flooring – throw rugs should be removed from the home
- Levered handles for doors, faucets, and cabinetry
It is important to start somewhere when you know that your desire is to live within your own home as you age. Taking it one step at a time makes the process as a whole easier to handle both emotionally and physically.
Glen Miller the Home Doctor is a licensed general contractor servicing Livingston County and the surrounding areas. Glen offers a wide range of services including home maintenance plans, age in place remodeling, kitchen and bathroom remodeling, finished basements, and hardwood floor refinishing. More information can be found online at https://www.glenmillerthehomedoctor.com/.