Let’s face it, fellow baby boomers. We’re getting older. Not only are we getting older, but our parents are reaching that stage where it’s sometimes difficult for them to live independently.
You’re right, this isn’t a particularly fun topic- BUT it is one that most of us will have to face at some point in time. The good news is that there are ways to modify a home to allow people to live in their homes as long and as comfortably as possible. It’s called Universal Design or Age-In-Place Design and I recently spoke to Jim Butz of Architecturally Speaking about this subject.
Jim’s company is a provider of home modification and remodeling solutions for the baby boomers and their aging parents’ generation. He is a Certified Aging In Place Specialist, meaning one who is qualified by the National Home Builder’s Association to address the needs of homeowners who seek to stay in their homes as long as possible.
Q: Jim, what is Age-In-Place design?
A: Essentially AIP design incorporates design elements that allow the widest variety of individual needs for safety and comfort in the home. For example, two of the main concerns are preventing falls and injuries and simplifying daily functions. The design elements that can be incorporated to achieve these are things like non-slip flooring, grab bars and other elements, and things as simple as levers instead of door knobs for ease of operation.
Q: Why is incorporating AIP design features in a remodel important?
A: It allows people the peace of mind of remaining in a familiar and nurturing environment in a community that they know and have been a part of for many years. This allows for better mental and physical health for the homeowner.
Q: What rooms are of primary importance when considering AIP design elements?
A: As the main concerns are preventing falls and injuries, the bathroom is generally the first room that is remodeled. Falls occur most often when transitioning from one place to another and these types of falls can be devastating. The second area for concern would be the kitchen, with the focus on ease of use and function.
Q: Where can people go to find out more about Architecturally Speaking?
A: Jim’s website is: www.archispeak.com or you can reach him at (847) 205-9844.
Thanks for sharing your expertise with us Jim! Stay tuned for some beautiful ways to create a safe home.