Twenty years from now, 17 million U.S. households will include at least one mobility-challenged older adult. But as a recent news item makes clear, the housing industry still lags in adapting to this demographic shift.
It’s going to be a pressing issue in the near future: currently, the U.S. Census Bureau says 2 million older adults in the U.S. use wheelchairs, while another 7 million rely on canes, crutches and other assistive devices.
And yet recent research from Harvard reveals that less than 10 percent of senior citizens live in spaces outfitted with basic adaptations for accessibility issues.
If you work in the renovation industry, it might be time to brush up on what people are likely to need in the next couple of decades if you want to keep your calendar full.
There are some instructive suggestions in the article around simple adaptations such as wheelchair ramps, swing-free hinges to widen doorways, raising electric wall sockets and lowering wall switches.
The more creative solutions available to modify existing homes and apartments for persons with disabilities, the better. In the process of working with clients on their estate plans, we see a strong desire on the part of most people to age in place. And having more accessibility options in the home goes a long way to making this possible.
If you or your parents are currently looking for ways to live independently as long as possible, contact us to get a plan in place to pay for the options that will make this a reality.