Retirement and your golden years are all about relaxation and investing in the people, places, and things that you love. However, this life phase often defined by leisure and enjoyment can also include a lot of changes and challenging decision-making. One of the biggest choices many adults face is whether or not to downsize during their retirement.
Just as one size doesn’t typically fit all, there is more than one path to domestic bliss. Starting fresh in a new community or condo might feel liberating and exciting for some, while others could not imagine leaving behind their roots and memories connected to their family home. If you fall into the latter group, now is the time to update your home and make it more conducive to aging-in-place.
Accessible, universal design would serve you well in any part of your floor plan, but one of the rooms we recommend tackling first is the kitchen! Think about it; kitchens are where families gather, they’re the heart of the home. We can think of no better place to begin remodeling than your most heavily trafficked space. There are many updates, both large and small, that can help your kitchen work with you as you age.
Begin with the Basics.
First and foremost, focus on simple elements that would make your kitchen easier to navigate for people of all abilities. Install adequate lighting, clear extra clutter and streamline walking paths, and invest in a comfortable rug or mat to make dishes or prep-work nicer on your joints. They may sound insignificant, but these little swaps go a long way towards improving your home!
Invest in Upgrades.
The next level of implementing accessible kitchen design involves a bit more investment and elbow grease. This phase could mean changes such as replacing your hardware with larger handles, installing pull-out drawers in your pantry or kitchen cabinets, adding easy-access open shelving, or buying a new single lever or touch-on faucet. All of these upgrades are friendly for arthritis and any level of arm strength.
Refresh the Floor Plan.
This final area of updates is where things can become a bit more expensive and lengthy. If you’re fighting an uphill battle with a poorly configured layout, then even the best little changes might not improve your kitchen enough. When aging-in-place is your aim, then you might want to think about reconfiguring your cabinetry, moving appliances, knocking down walls, or overhauling your entire space.
If you need help remodeling your home for retirement and are ready to get started, please, get in touch with us today! Our team has tackled many projects like this and can get you moving in the right direction!