elderly gentleman on lift

As you age, ensuring your home is comfortable is necessary. While everyone wants their living space to work for them, seniors often have more specific needs for where they live. Depending on your activity level and overall health, you may need to upgrade your home to make it more accessible and usable.

While home renovations can be costly, it’s useful for anyone reaching their 50s and beyond to think about some home upgrades they might want to do to make aging more comfortable. If you think of these things ahead of time, you won’t be left scrambling to do many home renovations at once when you’re facing different healthcare needs.

Important Upgrades To Make

While not all seniors will have the same accessibility needs, here are some great home renovation ideas to consider to make aging more manageable and make your house more accessible.

Idea 1: Install Grab Bars In Your Shower And Bath

Many accidents happen in the bathroom, which applies to people of many ages. However, a slip-and-fall accident can be more severe when you’re older. Installing grab bars and handles in your bathtubs and showers will reduce the risk of falling in the tub. These accessibility features are great for people of all ages and generally make the bathroom safer.

Investing in an emergency alert bracelet is also a great idea if you are prone to falling while getting ready in the bathroom.

Idea 2: Make Your Doorways Bigger

Most doorways aren’t big enough to easily accommodate a wheelchair. If you have mobility concerns or a condition that will likely worsen over time, ensuring you can get in and out of your house is a must. By widening your doorways, you’ll ensure you can get inside with a wheelchair or other mobility aids.

Idea 3: Add A Wheelchair Ramp

Along with making at least one doorway wider to allow entry into the home, you’ll likely need to add a wheelchair ramp if you want to make the home as accessible as possible. While this is a more costly renovation, if you anticipate yourself or anyone else needing a wheelchair in the near future, it’s a wise investment.

If you’re looking to add a long-term option for mobility and accessibility, a wheelchair ramp is a must for an aging-in-place home.

Idea 4: Mother-In-Law Suite

A mother-in-law suite is a separate living space, usually with a kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom, that allows different generations in a family to live close. These living setups are excellent for seniors who want to live near family or who need more assistance with their health.

While this is a more significant renovation that isn’t feasible for everyone, it’s a great option if you or a loved one need caregiving services.

Idea 5: Removable Shower Heads

Making your home friendly for aging and accessibility can cost money, but there are also some changes you can make on a budget. Removable shower heads make it easier to clean yourself, and they also make it easier for caregivers to help with bathing. Luckily, this upgrade is easy to do and fairly inexpensive. You can get a new showerhead and have it installed for around 100 bucks in most places.

Planning Ahead For Aging-In-Place

Making your home aging-in-place friendly takes some planning. However, if you think ahead, it’s easier to make the necessary home renovations. You won’t have to spend all the money at once and can save to make your home more comfortable as you age.

For more information about aging-in-place, check out this guide.