+91 9040099999

| Blogs | Is your home ready for your old age?

Views: 578

Is your home ready for your old age?

You are not going to stay young forever. As you grow old, your home and most of the fixtures, which you installed to cater to your youthful days will become outdated. How can home-buyers plan the interior décor and perhaps, structural design of their home in ways to be prepared for their silver years?

It's easy to run up and down the stairs when you are young. But will you be able to do that when you are 75 (unless, of course, you have knee replacement)? Or can you reach those kitchen cabinets, which were once easily accessible – 40 years later?

Most home-buyers are pretty young when they buy a house.

They are excited about doing up the living space according to the latest décor trends that suit their youthful lifestyle. And in the process, they miss factoring in those vital lifestyle changes that they may experience as they grow older into their home interior design.

India is expected to have 34.33 percent share of youth in total population by 2020, as per India's Census 2011. This grand chunk will also grow old over the years. So, just as you have worked out a concrete plan to complete your home loan repayment tenure when you're still young, similarly it is a wise move to plan ahead when it comes to your home design too.

The design factor:

Cautions home-buyers of multi-dwelling units such as apartments because it is almost impossible to execute any changes in the structure at a later date. "Basic facilities of wheelchair access, maneuverability of personal lifts, elderly-friendly bedrooms and toilets have to be considered during the initial design process. A good design should facilitate least split-levels, non-skid floors, easily accessible electrical switches, and above all, colour differentiation in the stairs for easy height perception,".

In the case of standalone houses or villas, one has the option of making design changes as per the time and age. Citing the example"The same room, which was first a children's nursery with a crib, was redesigned as the children grew up. The crib gave way to bunk beds with a play area beneath it. Later, as the children started going to college, the bunk bed was replaced by a raised bed with ample storage. The same room can be made senior citizen-friendly as the years go by to accommodate personalised requirements in the bed size and comfortable height, accessible bedside medicine cabinet, electrical switches, handy slots for remote consoles, etc."

Tech to the rescue:

Fortunately for us, we live in an era, which has seen immense advancement in technology with artificial intelligence dominating our life. Sound and movement sensors, voice-controlled systems, remote-access video interface, etc have made life secure and comfortable.

A tech-driven home needs company hits the bull's eye, "Technology has become indispensable in interior design. While designing a home, especially with old age in mind, technology plays a pivotal role in safety. Smart homes reduce the need to move about the house and enable remote access to lighting and other fixtures, video phones enable better conversation, strategically-placed CCTV cameras facilitate live-streaming at all times while sensors can alert loved ones of unforeseen movements at home in their absence. Technology has made living easy and it works for all ages."

 "Pre-planning helps in avoiding accidents and making life in your old age comfortable. For ease of vertical movement, home elevators can be installed. These are versatile and work on hydraulics,". Provisions for the installations such as the shaft, stairways, etc on which the moving fixtures will be mounted, will have to be planned during the designing of the home.

Retro-fit right:

In construction parlance, retro-fitting is a technique where old structures are modified in design or certain elements are replaced with more efficient ones. For example, a tiled roof can be retro-fitted with solar panels to make the home energy-efficient.

A few areas where retro-fitting can be done as you age are the bathroom and bedroom. So, if you had gleaming vitrified tiles in your bathroom when you made your home, thirty years later, you may find them slippery to handle. "Bathrooms can be retro-fitted with skid proof floors, grab bars, emergency electrical switches and faucets with thermo-control to avoid accidental burns by very hot water,", including furniture, especially beds to be raised for easy rising, and wardrobes, which you can access and operate while sitting on a chair.


We Recommend