remodeling to acommodate an elderly loved oneremodeling to acommodate an elderly loved one

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remodeling to acommodate an elderly loved one

When I invited my mother to come and live with my family, we had to make some changes to accommodate her. The changes that needed to be made were all within reason and were all required so that she could get around with her walker and eventually a wheelchair if need be. I hired a remodeling contractor to assist us with making the changes. I learned a lot while discussing what needed to be done and what it would take to get it complete. I created this blog with the hopes of helping other families that are considering making the same changes in their homes.

Five Steps To Creating A Safe And Comfortable Custom Home Addition For Your Senior Loved One

If you're like many people with a senior loved one in your life, you've given some thought to where the senior will live when it's no longer safe or healthy for them to remain living alone — and perhaps you're contemplating having a customized home addition installed. Customizing a home addition to accommodate a senior relative can be a great way to ensure their safety, comfort, and independence.

Here are some steps to consider when designing a custom home addition for a senior family member: 

Determine the Needs of the Senior Family Member

Start by talking to your senior relative about their current and future needs, such as mobility issues, accessibility concerns, and medical conditions. This will help you design an addition that meets their specific requirements. Keep in mind that your senior relative's needs may change over time — he or she may not need certain safety and accessibility features now, but these features may be essential in the future. 

Consider Accessibility

It's important to ensure that the new addition is accessible for someone with mobility issues, which may include installing wheelchair ramps or lifts, widening doorways, and creating barrier-free bathrooms. You should also consider incorporating universal design features such as lever-style door handles and rocker light switches.

Design for Safety

Incorporate safety features such as non-slip flooring, grab bars in the bathroom, walk-in showers and tubs, and motion-activated lighting. A hand-held shower head provides optimal ease of use, allowing seniors to use a shower chair, and raised toilet heights reduce the risk of falls. You may also want to consider installing a medical alert system or other safety devices. Avoid items such as throw rugs and table lamps that cast shadows. Sinks and toilets should 

Create a Private Living Space

Consider creating a separate living space for your senior relative, with a bedroom, living area, and bathroom. This will give them privacy and independence, while still being close to the rest of the family. Even if the plan is for your senior loved one to join the family for meals, it's still a good idea to include a small kitchen area where snacks and simple meals can be prepared. It's also a good idea to include ample storage space in the unit. 

Consult With a Contractor

It's important to work with a professional who has experience designing home additions for seniors. They can help you create a design that meets your family's needs while also adhering to building codes and regulations.