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Savvy Senior: How to create a safe ‘aging-in-place’ home

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Posted December 22, 2016 06:19 pm – Updated December 23, 2016 05:19 pm


Dear Savvy Senior,

My husband and I are interested by making some modifications to our home so we will stay dwelling there for so long as potential. Can you advocate some good assets that may assist us with aging-in-place concepts? — Staying Put

Dear Staying,

Many retirees, such as you and your husband, need to keep dwelling in their very own home for so long as potential. But having the ability to achieve this will rely upon how straightforward it’s to maneuver your home as you become old. Here are some useful assets you’ll be able to flip to for concepts of the several types of options and enhancements you can also make that may make your home safer and extra handy as you get older.

Home Evaluation

An excellent first step in making your home extra age-friendly is to do an evaluation. Go via your home, room by room, on the lookout for drawback areas resembling potential tripping or slipping hazards, in addition to areas which are exhausting to entry and troublesome to keep. To assist with this, there are a number of organizations which have aging-in-place checklists that time out potential issues in every space of the home, together with modification and options.

Rebuild Together, for instance, has a two-page “Safe at Home Checklist” that’s created in partnership with the Administration on Aging and the American Occupational Therapy Association.

The National Association of Home Builders additionally has an “Aging-in-Place Remodeling Checklist” that gives greater than 100 strategies to may help householders age 50-plus reside safely, independently and comfortably.

Also take a look at AARP’s wonderful “HomeFit Guide,” which is crammed with 28 pages of ideas and diagrams to make your complete home safe and simpler to reside in as you age. You can entry it at, or name (888) 687-2277 and ask them to mail you a free copy.

Personalized Advice

If you need extra personalised assist, contemplate getting a skilled in-home evaluation with an occupational therapist.

An occupational therapist can consider the challenges and shortcomings of your home for getting older in place, advocate design and modification options, and introduce you to services to assist you to make enhancements.

To discover an occupational therapist in your space, verify together with your doctor, medical insurance supplier or native hospital, or search suggestions from household and associates. Many medical insurance suppliers, together with Medicare, can pay for a home evaluation by an occupational therapist if prescribed by your physician. However, they won’t cowl the bodily upgrades to the home.

Another choice is to contact a builder who’s a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS). CAPS are home remodelers and design-build professionals which are educated about such home modifications and may recommend methods to modify or rework your home that may suit your wants and price range. CAPS are usually paid by the hour or obtain a flat charge per go to or challenge.

To discover a CAPS in your space, go to the National Association of Home Builders web site at the place you’ll be able to search by state and metropolis.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or go to Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today present and writer of “The Savvy Senior” e-book.

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