Helpful Interior Design Recommendations For People Who Want To Age In Place

Seventy-six percent of  Americans 50 years old and above plan to spend their senior years at home. The same survey by AARP also found out that 77 percent of senior respondents want to stay in their current community as long as they can, while others responded that they are willing to consider alternative housing like home-sharing or constructing a secondary dwelling within their current property. In order to make these desires possible, children of some seniors who wish to keep their parents with mobility problems comfortable and be able to age at home  can make certain interior upgrades that will allow their elderly parents to continue thriving on their own. Fortunately, most modern upgrades don’t make senior homes look overly clinical or like a typical hospital room. Here are several interior design inspirations to support aging in place without sacrificing the aesthetics of the home.
Helpful Interior Design Recommendations For People Who Want To Age In Place

Aging In Place Design Checklist

The National Association of Home Builders  released a home remodeling checklist to serve as a guide for anyone who plans to age in place and make updates in their home to allow them to easily do so. Based on the checklist, the overall floor plan for the home should ensure the main living areas are all on the same single story of a property. This means that all the major rooms like the bedroom and bathroom with full bath should be on the same level. Key upgrades to the bathroom, such as installing a  walk in tub, is a must – especially if the elderly person is at risk of falling. The tub should have easy-to-open doors that make it easy to enter the tub by walking on it instead of climbing over the edge. Also, the entire floor plan of the house must be spacious enough to allow easy wheelchair accessibility.

Appropriate Flooring Options

When designing a property for people who want to age in place, it is important to select smooth and soft surfaces such as rubber, cork, or linoleum for the floor. These materials are known to be more forgiving on a person’s joints. These can also lessen the risk of tripping, which is much more common on padded carpets. In addition, the flooring must always be smooth and level. If using a printed linoleum, it should not have strong patterns to prevent interfering with the elderly person’s depth perception.

Senior-Friendly Kitchen Design

Since standing long hours can be challenging for the elderly, adding an area where they can sit properly while preparing meals should be  considered. The home builder could install an adjustable kitchen island on wheels that can be altered according to the needs of the elderly person. It is also recommended to lower the height of the sink or make it shallow so those who are in a wheelchair can access it. In addition, placing under-cabinet lighting and larger kitchen drawers can help elderly people move around the kitchen with ease.

The interior design of a home where seniors plan to age in place does not need to look boring or exude a hospital room aesthetic. Rather, there are ideas that can be incorporated that will still give the property a homey feel, which will make seniors feel comfortable. In addition,  these upgrades will allow seniors to have easy access to all of the rooms and furniture inside their house so they can move around without any trouble.
 

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