As we age, our needs change. We have already discussed preparing your home to move, talking to your parents/children about the need to move and how to identify someone who can help through this process. Today, I want to talk about aging in place.
According to an AARP research study conducted in January of 2020, Three in four older Americans want to stay in their homes and age in place, and technology that allows them to get help in an emergency or track their health virtually can be critical to helping them achieve that goal.
Yes, as a Realtor I only make money when a home sale and move takes place, but that is not my primary focus with working with seniors. I truly care about their health, happiness, safety and wellbeing. And sometimes, seniors just want to stay in their homes. I understand and respect that, and as long as it’s safe for them, I agree this could be the best place for them. It is with this understanding that I have cultivated many relationships with caregivers who come to the homes of seniors and provide needed services. Often this is more expensive to the Seniors but if they can afford it and it makes them happy and keeps them safe, why not? Every 11 seconds an older adult falls. Most commonly in the bathroom but also in other areas of the home. The bathroom is the area in which 80% of falls occur for the population of adults 65 years and older so let’s start by making this area safe.
Grip/grab bars: These can be installed anywhere someone may have trouble getting up easily like a toilet area and in places where they could slip like a shower or tub. Having something to grab onto to steady oneself is a huge help.
Tub cuts or walk-in showers: If you only have a tub, a tub cut is an easy fix. This literally cuts a space in the middle of the tub so you can walk in and take a shower avoiding having to take a high step over the edge of the tub.
Stair Chair: A device that you sit on which in essence carries you up the stairs so you don’t have to walk. This is a game changer for Seniors who have an upstairs bedroom and bathroom and who don’t want to remodel the first floor of their homes to accommodate their changing needs.
Ramps: If stairs are hard, you can get a custom made ramp installed outside your home. You can walk on this or use a wheelchair if necessary.
Home Health care workers: You can get a primary care doctor to come to your home or a qualified nurse practitioner. Whether it’s for personal care and companionship or medication management or medicare certified visits, there are companies who have people who make house calls!
Senior activity programming: There are zoom programs, exercise classes and memory care activities both in person and online to keep the brain active and engaged as well as to make new connections.
Volunteer opportunities: Older adults who volunteer for as little as two hours per week can substantially lower their risk of early death, become more physically active, and improve their sense of well-being compared with those who don’t volunteer according to a new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
While it is just launching soon, there will be a new platform for Seniors to stay connected from home. This service is called E-volveSC.com. Check it out and all that it offers.
I hope this gave you a little insight into some of the ways there are available to make Senior’s lives easier while they stay at home. If you need any personal recommendations or connections to reliable service providers, please reach out to me any time.