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Adapting & renovating a home for the elderly

Adapting & renovating a home for the elderly

Interior renovationsAdapting & renovating a home for the elderly

Home elderly care is becoming a growing concern in our society, while many want to live in the comfort and warmth of a family home. 

In order to provide a safe and accommodating environment, it’s imperative to carry out certain renovations or modifications in the home’s interior. So, how can you adapt your home to the needs of a senior?

Renovating a home to suit the needs of the elderly

elderly home

Source: Canva

A functional entrance without risks

Around the front door, opt for strong lighting that will limit the chances of a fall if a person has a hard time seeing the staircase. If there’s an eyehole, this element should be placed at an accessible height so that there’s no need to stretch to be able to see through it. 

In the case of the hearing impaired, pair the doorbell with a visual ring indicator, offering a level of convenience when expecting guests.

Kitchen safety

If there’s a gas stove in the home, it’s a good idea to consider switching to an electric hob or an induction burner. Indeed, induction plates or electric plates with a control mechanism greatly reduce the risk of burns. If you absolutely must keep your gas stove, make sure to install an automatic cut-off device for the gas. 

On another note, consider that a countertop and cabinets installed at eye level will help to limit exaggerated movements when reaching for kitchen objects as well as the risks involved in dropping them. When storing objects in cabinets, avoid placing heavy objects higher than eye level. Having to lift objects any higher than at arm's length will greatly increase the risk of injury. 

Ideally, care should be given to minimize the number of objects at ground level. In this regard, it should be noted that it may be appropriate to integrate garbage cans and recycle or compost bins inside of a cupboard specially equipped with rails. This can then be concealed under the waste basin following use.

An accessible bathroom

If possible, we’d recommend installing a walk-in shower. The advantage of this shower is it doesn’t require a step-up, reducing the risk of falling. 

Two support bars should be installed inside the shower for convenience. Also, the addition of a non-slip mat is strongly recommended, whether dealing with a bath or shower. A wall seat would also be useful to help in the moments when standing in the shower is simply too large a physical effort.

An elevated toilet is another way to ease the amount of physical effort, the ideal height would be around 50cm. For those who wish to avoid replacing the current toilet, know that it’s possible to opt for a bench-raised toilet. Some models include armrests, allowing anyone who uses it to sit safely. 

Although it’s not well known, the type of faucet simply referred to as the thermostatic mixing valve is particularly useful to avoid the risk of burns. Specifically, it works by adjusting the water temperature with a single control and automatically blocking any temperature over 38 degrees celsius. The water temperature is maintained for the duration the tap is in use. Even if the water supply is briefly cut, it will be restored once the water has been turned on again.

It’s also relevant to know that if cold water is no longer available for any reason, the water will automatically stop flowing to prevent the user of the device from getting burned.



Remove obstacles from stairs or corridors, such as bulky flower pots or boxes of things. Computer, lamp or television wires should be secured to the floor with adhesive or grouped together in a wire rack (housing or pipe when bundling wires together).

Ideally, staircases should have step nosings, which are baseboards or rubber covers placed on the edge of a step to provide a better grip. Be sure to secure your carpets to the ground to prevent their flaps from causing a fall. 

In corridors, it is recommended to install a few grab bars, the number of which will depend on the length of space to be covered. It is indeed important to limit the length of distance without one in order to avoid too much physical effort. 

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Last modified 2023-11-07

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