correction: An beforehand adaptation of this adventure gave the incorrect name for the alignment Joanne Theunissen chairs. This adaptation has been corrected.
by Daniel Bortz August 8 at 10:00 AM
Planning to break in your home able-bodied into your aureate years? Doing some renovations afore you retire can advice accomplish your abode added attainable and safe for your activity ahead.
Nearly 90 percent of bodies over age 65 appetite to break in their homes for as continued as possible, according to analysis by the National Conference of State Legislatures with AARP Public Policy Institute. However, abounding bodies accomplish the aberration of cat-and-mouse too continued to accomplish renovations that facilitate aging, says Marianne Cusato, an accessory accessory assistant at the University of Notre Dame’s School of Architecture. “You don’t delay until you accept advancement issues to accomplish changes to your house,” she says.
Of course, some preemptive renovations accomplish added faculty than others. Installing ramps to board a wheelchair, for example, is an big-ticket and potentially accidental change because “not anybody apprehension up in a wheelchair,” Cusato says.
Still, there are some accepted architecture changes and adjustment projects that will advice you abound earlier in your home calmly and safely.
A applicant shower
For earlier adults who accept advancement issues, aggressive over the angle of a bathtub can be difficult. A applicant battery can break this botheration and accomplish your bath attending added modern, says Joanne Theunissen, 2018 armchair of the National Association of Home Builders Remodelers.
Cost: Tearing out an old tub or battery and architecture a applicant battery can be expensive. Although there are applicant battery kits that alpha as low as $200, you charge to be abreast in accouterments and framing to do the assignment yourself. Accepting one of these kits professionally installed will add accession $750 to $2,500, depending on the bath blueprint and accouterments requirements, according to home-improvement ability BobVila.com. For a professionally installed custom shower, apprehend to pay anywhere from $6,500 to $15,000, or more, depending on the admeasurement of the battery and the materials.
Every 11 seconds, an earlier developed is advised in the emergency allowance for a fall, the National Council on Crumbling (NCOA) reports. Adding grab confined in baddest areas can advice abate your accident of falling. However, “just accepting a grab bar in every allowance of your abode for the account of accepting one doesn’t accomplish a accomplished lot of sense,” says Steve Hoffacker, a certified aging-in-place specialist and instructor. “You accept to anticipate strategically about area you appetite to install them.”
Your capital battery (even if it’s a walk-in) should accept one. And a atom that deserves a grab bar yet is about disregarded is the advanced door. “When you’re aggravating to antithesis bales or grocery accoutrements that you’re holding, it’s nice to accept article to authority assimilate added than the aperture handle,” Hoffacker says.
Cost: Grab confined about crave able installation. On average, it costs $140 to accept three grab confined installed by a handyman, according to Fixr.com.
A first-floor adept apartment
One of the best means to age-proof a abode is by accepting a adept bedchamber and bath on the aboriginal floor, says Mark Hager, architect of AgeInPlace.com. “You appetite to accept aggregate you charge on one akin so that you don’t accept to ascend stairs as you get older,” Hager explains.
Cost: If you don’t already accept amplitude on the aboriginal attic that you can about-face into a adept suite, you’ll accept to body an addition. But be prepared: It costs a lot of money to admission the brand of your home. To add an added room, homeowners spend, on average, $80 to $200 per aboveboard foot, HomeAdvisor says. So, if you’re architecture a 250-square-foot bedchamber and bathroom, it can amount anywhere amid $20,000 and $50,000. “It’s a big expense, but it absolutely pays,” Hager says.
Door batten handles
Nearly bisected of bodies 65 years or earlier accept arthritis, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports. And aback you accept arthritis, alike acquisitive a bulge can be painful. One solution: Alter doorknobs with batten handles throughout your home.
Cost: At Home Depot, stainless batten handles alpha at about $5 apiece. Added acceptable news: You don’t charge to appoint a able to alter a bulge with a batten handle — this is an accessible DIY project.
Floor surfaces can be glace depending on their material. Some homeowners try to abode this affair by accoutrement balk or coat floors with rugs. However, “rugs can actualize a hazard, because they change the brand of the floor,” Cusato says.
If you do a Google chase for “slip-resistant flooring” you’ll acquisition acutely amaranthine options. So, let’s abridge things: Alter any hardwood, coat or asphalt attic with carpeting in every allowance except for the kitchen, bathrooms and mudroom. Why? “Carpet can advice beanbag a abatement abundant bigger than a adamantine surface,” Cusato says.
One caveat: Most wheelchairs and walkers don’t cycle over carpeting as able-bodied as they cycle over adamantine flooring, so accomplish abiding the carpeting is no college than a half-inch and the added beneath is close (not squishy).
Cost: Abounding factors go into carpeting prices and accession costs, such as allowance admeasurement and shape, carpeting material, appliance removal, and labor. But, in general, high-quality carpeting and added can be installed for $19 to $38 a aboveboard yard, or $300 to $600 for a 12-by-12-foot room, CostHelper.com says.
Pullouts aren’t advised alone for crumbling homeowners, but they’re accessible as you age by giving you easier admission to dishes, accoutrement and cookware. Indeed, “you don’t appetite to accept to angle over or ability the aback of the chiffonier to booty out a pot or pan, because you ability accept agitation accepting aback up,” Cusato says.
Cost: The amount tag varies depending on the admeasurement of the cabinets, but a 22-inch-deep pullout shelf costs $58.69 at Home Depot. And you don’t charge a handyman to alter shelves with pullout drawers.
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