Home Buying a Home What to Look for in Senior-Friendly Homes

What to Look for in Senior-Friendly Homes

by Eric Rothman
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Are you looking for the perfect abode for enjoying your golden years? Finding the right home for gracefully growing older can be tricky.

You want a property that won’t eat up all your time, money, and energy, and you want a house that will be comfortable and safe as you age.

Here are some tips for finding a home that’s the right match for your needs.

Arranging the Move in Advance

Sometimes, when you find the right home and make an offer, things can move along rapidly.

Unless you’re planning a DIY move, which is backbreaking work, you need to get your arrangements for the move made well in advance. With that in mind, start researching movers sooner rather than later.

There are many scammers in the world of moving companies, so be alert to anything that feels fishy or seems easier than it should be. Someone should come to your place to see what will be moved, and as the Spruce notes, estimates and arrangements should be documented.

Ask around with friends and family members about movers, read online reviews and make some price comparisons when booking help.

Housing Searches and Priorities

Meeting your needs now and in the future can be challenging, especially as age takes a toll on your mind and body. You want a home that will support you and help you remain independent, no matter what life throws your way.

Thanks to home design movements such as universal design and aging in place, there is increasing awareness of the need for homes that are accessible for people of various abilities and ages.

Unfortunately, homes that are built to be fully accessible are few and far between. What is more common and affordable for most people is to find a home that could be easily modified to meet their needs.

A home with an accommodating structure will need less alteration in the future. You can assess your current situation, look for a home that can immediately or quickly meet your current requirements, and make more changes later on.

Finding Accessible Properties

When it comes to what to look for in a home, there are plenty of possibilities, but certain features are particularly important when it comes to navigation and independence throughout your senior years.

For instance, an entryway that is step-free is key if mobility should become limited, and it makes for easier movement when eyesight, strength, and balance are challenged. Single-floor living is also important, as well as open floor plans and non-slip flooring.

Ample windows for abundant natural lighting can be a boon, as well as door frames that are wider than average. As HealthDay points out, you should generally aim for 32 inches wide or more.

A home accessibility checklist makes evaluating potential properties simpler.

Easy Additions and Upgrades

Oftentimes, compromise is the logical solution when searching for the right home. There are a number of simple, inexpensive, and effective modifications that can be made to homes for a more accessible living environment.

For instance, you can have a ramp installed to make home entry easier, replace plush carpeting with senior-friendly flooring, and upgrade the lighting throughout the house. Replacing doorknobs with lever-type handles is helpful for aging hands, and similarly, lever faucet handles are beneficial.

Traditional door frames can be made wider quickly and easily with off-set hinges, and grab bars and taller commodes are a plus in bathrooms.

Consider making minor adjustments to a home with good bones right away, and you can make more significant changes down the road.

Finding the right home for your golden years can often seem challenging, but with some research and planning, things will come together.

Prioritize what you want and need, and ensure you have good help when it’s time to make the move. With a few effective strategies in place, you’ll find the perfect abode for your future in no time!

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