More than 90% of older adults say they would prefer to age in their home. This shouldn’t be a surprise since aging at home gives older adults a sense of stability, familiarity, and dignity.
But is it always the best decision?
Every situation will be different, and there is no ONE right answer. But there are usually a lot of emotions involved in this decision, which makes it very difficult to remain objective! So here are some questions that deserve serious consideration and discussion among all parties (parent, family, siblings, caretakers, etc.) before a decision is made. Remember to consider these questions with a long-term perspective.
Is the house suited for aging in place or will modifications need to made?
Who will take care of maintenance (shoveling, raking, changing lightbulbs)
Cognition & Physical Abilities
How will cognitive limitations (i.e. memory loss) affect aging in place?
How will physical limitations (i.e. loss of balance) affect aging in place?
Is there somebody nearby who can check-in on a regular basis?
Can monitoring using smart technology be utilized?
Are personal hygiene, cooking, getting dressed, etc., difficult?
Who will help with daily living tasks as they become more difficult?
Socialization & Support System
How will socialization take place and isolation be prevented?
What community resources are available for older adults & caregivers?
As driving becomes difficult, are there alternative means of transportation?
Is the appropriate healthcare available nearby?
Are there any medication issues that needs to be addressed?
Is remaining at home an affordable option considering all of the above?
Nobody can tell you whether or not aging in place is the best decision for you or a loved one. Sit down with everybody involved and carefully review of all of the above issues together. Consider getting expert opinions as well (from physicians, home re-modelers, geriatric care workers, etc.) who can objectively evaluate and make recommendations.
If you’re in need of an expert opinion on your home’s accessibility, please contact us! We provide a complimentary home assessment with every project so you know where home safety issues are and can have them addressed.