Aging in Place

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Aging in Place

More Americans are choosing to “age in place” – or to stay in their residence for as long as possible. But many also find that the home that suited their younger bodies and lifestyles need to be modified to fit their needs as they age.

HomeAdvisos, a digital marketplace that connects homeowners with service professionals to complete home projects, recently looked into this subject.

The company polled Americans for its 2017 Aging in Place survey, and found that that homeowners are completing future-thinking projects without connecting them to aging in place..

In fact, while only about half of the survey respondents are familiar with the concept of “aging in place” by name, most are completing projects such as installing smart thermostats or replacing appliances to improve ease of living in their homes.

And these improvements, coupled with regular home maintenance, make for just the kind of holistic approach to home improvement that will lay the foundation to help homeowners remain in their homes as they age.

In this year’s survey, HomeAdvisor interviewed two groups of homeowners, one aged 55-75 and the other aged 75 and older, to examine the motivation for completing home improvements at different life stages.

Not only did these interviews uncover homeowners’ goals for completing home projects, but they also garnered valuable advice and perspective from homeowners who’ve watched loved ones age in place and those who’ve aged in place first hand.

Highlights of the 2017 Aging in Place Report:

  • Having a regular home maintenance schedule, and keeping the future in mind when making improvements, ensures that the home is project-ready when the time comes to make aging-specific improvements, such as adding grab bars and widening doorways.
  • Homeowners are making home improvements that will facilitate aging, citing ease of living as their motive for completing most projects — even over safety and aesthetics.
  • Nearly half of homeowners aged 75 and older report renovating their homes in anticipation of getting older. Correspondingly, less than 30 percent report struggling to get around the house as they’ve aged.
  • Watching a loved one struggle impacts how homeowners view aging in place. Roughly three in five homeowners aged 55-75 report seeing a loved one (a parent, sibling, partner, etc.) struggle to get around their home as they got older, further reporting that this experience has changed their feelings about how they will age in place personally.

Aging in place is an attractive alternative to moving to a purpose-built retirement community. Just make sure that the place keeps pace with your needs.

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