The practice of “Aging in Place” has increased dramatically over the past decade. Due to the rapid changes in technology and advances in medical treatment, it’s become a lot easier for the elderly to remain in their homes rather than having to reside in a facility. Both the Georgia Institute of Technology and the University of Florida have developed smart houses filled with technology such as pendants which understand commands in the form of hand gestures. It can open and lock doors, close blinds, and turn on lights. It also has an in-home monitoring system that can inform family members about an older relative’s daily activities, health status, and potential problems. One home has smart refrigerators and pantries which can detect food consumption and expired products. There are smart laundry machines that can coordinate with the smart closet to notify the resident when it is time to do laundry as well as aid in sorting the laundry.
But there are things you can do without having to move into a smart home to aid in “Aging in Place” such as:
Installing an easy to read and programmable thermostat
Having lights that come on immediately when entering a room
Convert all door handles and faucets to hand free lever handles
Grab bars tailored to home owner needs in rooms such as the bathroom and kitchen
No step or low step entrances
Place a bench or table both outside and inside the door to place parcels
Ring handles on drawers and cupboards for easy opening
Appliances with large easy to read word and numbers
By making these accommodations and modifications, it can dramatically increase the ability of your loved to remain in the home of their choosing, as long as they are able.