There has been a surge of interest in the last several years to purchase or remodel a home to age in place in Northern Virginia, D.C., and Maryland – and much of the U.S. This is a concept for people growing older concerned with being able to continue living independently at home in a comfortable environment rather than relocating to an unfamiliar place. Age in place design principles prioritize accessibility and take into account other potential issues homeowners may face as they age.
If you are currently thinking about remodeling, why not consider updating your home with your future in mind by creating a space where you can gracefully age in place? Here are a few things to consider:
Installing easy-to-reach grab bars, widening doorways for wheelchair or walker accommodations, or installing slip-free flooring are all simple choices that can make long lasting changes in your home. Other safety features such as curbless showers, switching to lever doorknobs, or lowering cabinetry and utilizing open shelving can also work to make your home safer and more accessible. If you don’t know where to start, try implementing universal design principles into your home, as they specialize in accessibility and livable features. They include but aren’t limited to lowering switch plates, cooktops or sinks, making an open floor plan or installing appliances with your needs in mind; such as an oven with side doors rather than ones that open down.
Comfort is also an essential feature when it comes to aging in place. If you’re considering a remodel, think about putting all your essential rooms on the main floor for easier access. Or if you are just doing renovations consider installing a chair lift. Aging in place designs aren’t solely for function either; installing luxury features such as heated floors or below cabinet kitchen vacuums can increase your home’s value as well as your comfort.
Rooms Specific Modifications
Here are some ideas for modifications separated by room:
- Hands free or lever faucet handles
- Lowering cabinets or countertops to be wheelchair accessible
- Higher toilets
- Add a bench or fold down seat in the shower with a handheld shower within reach
- Including a height adjustable showerhead or handheld
- Curbless shower
- Open storage solutions with pull down rods
- Lowering bed frames and nightstands and including a bed rail
- Replacing rugs with non-slip surfaces
In instances like age in place remodels, technology can be a great addition to your home. It can help residents to adjust the thermostat, lock or unlock the door, or play music effortlessly. It can also be helpful for people with Alzheimer’s or dementia who need auditory reminders or noises. Motion sensor lighting is also a helpful tool if it’s hard to flip a switch, and it can also serve as a reminder for caregivers if someone hasn’t moved in a while. Security systems and cameras can be convenient for family members to check in.
If you are thinking of pursuing a remodel with accessibility to age in place in Northern Virginia, D.C., or Maryland, don’t hesitate to reach out today and let our experienced team at Metro Building and Remodeling Group (MBRG) help you with your journey. Contact us with questions or to schedule an appointment.