More and more seniors seem to be choosing to age in place rather than pack up and move to a retirement community or assisted-living facility, and you can’t blame them. No matter what the reasons are that they are making this decision, the fact remains that there will need to be some upgrades and additions made to enhance safety. With that in mind, here are some ways to future-proof your home so that you may enjoy it for many years to come.
Take Lighting Seriously
Insufficient lighting is one of the many causes of seniors enduring accidents in their own home. What may have once seemed bright enough now is not good enough to properly illuminates the living spaces. As people grow older, their eyesight weakens so it only makes sense to update the lightbulbs with brighter LED bulbs that also last much longer than their incandescent counterparts. To avoid accidents involving light sockets, try to raise them to a level where they can be used without having to bend over, but while sitting instead.
Perform A Walk-Through
Walk through the home and look for areas that are prone to have clutter from some things as shoes, books or newspapers, as well as cords. Find places in the home where they will not be in the way and so easily tripped over. Bundle cords when possible so that they are not laying all over the floor. Stray cords can be one of the more frequent reasons seniors’ trip and fall in their home.
Install an Elevator
While it may be an upfront cost to you, having future-proofing residential elevators installed in the home is a fantastic way to avoid accidents from falling down the stairs. When you grow older, your balance or leg strength may not be what it used to be. This can be quite dangerous, especially if you live alone. Residential elevators relieve you of the need to use the stairs at all. While most insurance policies will not pay for them, if you or your spouse is a veteran then you may qualify for the HISA program which helps to cover the costs involved with installing an elevator.
Install Smart Devices Wherever Possible
While technology might not be your thing, there are some easy ways to make it work for you. These days, there’s a smart version of just about every appliance or electrical system that you can possibly think of with many safety features in place. If you still want to enjoy cooking, inquire about having a smart oven installed. These appliances come equipped with motion sensors that alert the oven to shut off is no movement has been detected for a certain period of time. Streaming speakers can be programmed to communicate with other family members to ward off loneliness. Smart lighting and thermostats can be programmed to turn on or off at certain times of the day or can be instantly activated at the sound of your voice. This way a light can be turned on before getting out of bed or entering a room.