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Offered by Jan Hepp-Struck, Hepp Realty

Last month I introduced the hot button topic of Aging in Place and the growing trend of universal design to more fully address the needs of our rapidly growing aging population and their desire to stay in their homes. But what does that really look like in terms of physical changes to your home and the impact on your life now.

First and foremost, universal (or ageless) design is about focusing on safety, ease of movement, and attractive design, both inside and outside, for all ages and abilities regardless of the stage of life. There are, of course, the more obvious and major design elements like open floor plans and widened hallways and doorways that allow for more accessibility for wheel chairs, scooters, and walkers. Another major consideration is accommodating the ability for single-floor living by ensuring kitchen, full bathroom, bedroom, and laundry are all accessible on the main floor.

But what about less major design elements outside of a major remodel… think about things that some might consider purely cosmetic adaptations such as lever-style faucet and door handles because they are much easier to operate for someone with painful joints or a weak grip. Additionally, some less obvious features could include lower or no threshold doorways. You might also consider lowered or more shallow countertops and sinks, lower cabinets, a curbless shower stall or even a walk-in bathtub that can also function as an individual jacuzzi bath, lowered light switches and thermostat, and lighting/fan fixtures with separate remotes or WIFI connectivity.

In short, your home doesn’t have to look like a geriatric facility to be functional for someone aging in place.

For proven expertise in buying or selling a home, call Jan at 303. 520.4340

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