Preparing For Retirement
If you love your home and plan to live in it through your retirement years, you’ll want to be sure it’s safe for you as you face some of those little challenges aging presents. Now is the time to assess your home and evaluate any changes you may need to make. Doing so will reduce the risk of injury and give your loved one’s peace of mind, especially if you live alone.
Here’s what you’ll want to inspect as you consider aging in place:
- Bathroom handrails. Next to the toilet and tub are the top choices to install handrails. Not only are bars for moments of instability, but they can help you raise and lower yourself more easily. You might also consider converting to a walk-in shower with a seat.
- Non-slip surfacing. There are non-slip mats and tape that can be applied to the floors to minimize the possibility of slipping. Showers and tubs are much safer if you reduce the chance of slippage.
- Stairway railings. Inside and outside stairways should have sturdy, functional rails (i.e., not just decorative).
- Ample lighting. Consider adding lighting indoors and outdoors. Decreased visibility is a significant contributor to falls. Lighting also adds security by deterring would-be burglars.
- Sharp edges. Sharp corners on tables and countertops are a dangerous hazard. Consider replacing these areas with rounded surfaces.
- Flat thresholds. Transitions from room to room should be as bump-free as possible. Stepping over the occasional random stair or elevated threshold may not seem like a significant issue, but removing potential hazards is a good idea.
- Storage height. Look for alternative storage options if you’ve been used to climbing up and down step ladders to access your storage spaces.
- Furniture support. Is your couch too low, do your chairs have armrests for support, or are countertops too high? Find the sweet spot where comfort and safety meet.
Home size is often an issue, especially if upkeep and maintenance issues are a concern. Of course, if you’ve decided your current home isn’t the greatest for an age-in-place approach to your golden years, it may be time to consider a change. Give me a call if you would like information on downsizing, I would love to help you with this transition. Kim Shaw (928) 910-9148.