Planning for a post working life includes looking at whether a different style of accommodation will better suit their future aspirations, such as an apartment or townhouse, or making alterations to an existing large family home.
No matter what, living quarters need to suit the changing realities of progressing through senior years.
When looking to buy a house or apartment, or updating the existing home, the following safety measures should be taken into account.
Inside the home:
- corridors, door frames and turning areas should be able to accommodate a walking frame, wheelchair or mobile-assisted device
- door and cupboard handles should be easily grasped and at a manageable height
- in multi-storey homes, at least one bedroom and one bathroom should be located on the ground floor
- the bathroom should be large enough to fit a wheelchair or walking frame, and be able to have railings fitted for easy access into and out of baths and toilets
- bench heights in laundries and kitchens should be appropriate for potential disabled access
- stairs, thick carpets and other incidentals that could impede mobility or be easily tripped upon should be avoided.
Outside the home, the site and topography should be considered. If it is too hilly, steep, or has steps, it will be difficult for elderly people to manoeuvre. Car parking should also be on a flat area with easy access to the front door as well as a porch to protect from the elements, and if possible, no stairs.
It is also a good idea to seek the advice of an expert, either building or disability, who can inspect the property and ensure it is suitable for any future changes that may be required.
Posted from 111-113 Wilson Street, Burnie.