How to Prepare Your Home for a Senior Loved One
As our loved ones enter seniority, it’s natural for us to want to be closer to them. In some cases, it even makes sense to have them move in with us, but this major decision can often prove chaotic without the right research and preparation. If you’re thinking of receiving a new elderly housemate, here’s how you can get your home ready.
As we enter seniority, the logistics of our lifestyle can change fundamentally. Oftentimes, senior citizens require accessible houses with grab bars, handicap showers & tubs, visibility lighting and other features. If you want to ensure that your elderly loved one is comfortable (and functional) moving around and living in your home, it’s important to take into account their physical limitations.
To prepare your house for the challenges of senior living, you may need to make renovations or remodel certain areas. These projects can be a challenge but, with the right methods, you can make changes quickly and for minimal cost – for example, cash-out refinancing can immediately free up funds for home improvements at low out-of-pocket costs. Just be sure, before refinancing, to carry out plenty of research on your provider and acquaint yourself with all the relevant terminology.
Once you’ve acquired the means to make renovations, the question still remains, what kind of help does your loved one really need? A good place to start is with visibility – studies show that one in three elderly persons suffers from some form of vision-reducing eye disease by the age of 65. To assist with this, consider installing motion-sensor lights that turn on automatically as you move from room to room. It’s also possible to widen door frames and even the surface area of a room in order to reduce the chance of an accident and to keep all the required facilities on one floor.
Getting up the stairs is often an issue for seniors. To help with their upwards mobility, it might be worth looking into extra banisters, rails, or stairlifts. If you have the space and a suitable home, it can even be possible to install a through-floor lift (though this is an expensive option). Just remember, you may need local planning permission or permission from landlords/neighbors.
Moving around is one thing, but what about when you get there? Making your home accessible often means focusing on smaller details. Your loved one might need grab handles, lowered switches, or smart tech to help them function in day-to-day life. A door-entry intercom, for example, can provide them with improved safety and reduce their need to move around. These solutions are built to accommodate those with handicaps and, whilst relatively inexpensive, can make a huge difference in the life of a senior.
When it comes to hygiene and bathing solutions, special care should be taken to ensure your loved ones are safe on their own, in a private space. Easy access baths, accessible wet floor showers, height-powered toilets, and adjustable basins are all on the list of features that can help ensure they’re able to clean themselves and are not struggling to do so.
The features your loved ones require will always depend upon their individual circumstances. The most important thing, when trying to adapt your home for new senior lodgers, is to communicate clearly and to get an early idea of what it is they most urgently need. With a considerate, transparent approach, you’re sure to create a home that everyone’s happy to live in.