We enjoy helping people live well in their homes as they continue to live in them and age in place. Sometimes those homes are well-suited for them, but often they are not. However, it may not take much to make them more ideal.
When there is not an urgent need that demands our attention as far as a renovation to address it, a relatively simple and inexpensive solution may suffice. We don’t need to look for more work than might be necessary or required. Many people who are choosing to remain living in their current homes need some help to create more suitable living environments for themselves, but modest, low-cost fixes that we can provide may greatly enhance their living space.
Without spending a lot of money or disrupting their routines much at all, we can accomplish several improvements in someone’s home that will make it safer, easier to use, and more accessible. They could even do these some of these upgrades for themselves, but we can help them have a safer, more accessible, and more comfortable home.
We know that lighting – the amount and location of it – is a major concern in homes as we get older. It’s a physical fact that we require more light to see and read than we did at a much younger age. Our eyes simply aren’t as responsive as they were. Therefore, anything we can do to aid our clients with the provision of more and better lighting in their living space will enhance their lifestyle and general safety.
We can begin by replacing every incandescent bulb that they have in their home with an LED bulb. It’s going to be more reliable and produce considerably less heat, meaning that the potential for a burn from accidentally or carelessly touching or bumping it will be reduced or nearly eliminated and the potential for fire from something flammable (paper or fabric) coming into contact with it will be eliminated as well.
Depending on our client’s age, we may want to replace their incandescent bulbs with ones of the same color of light, meaning something in the 2300 Kelvin range to match the temperature and appearance of the incandescent bulb. While residential bulbs go up to nearly 7000 in temperature, these often are too blue for an older person to be comfortable for them to have in their living space. They are regarded as too bright, and something warmer (lower in temperature) is frequently requested.
Putting LED bulbs throughout someone’s home also means that there is going to be a very low likelihood of the need to replace them very soon. They are rated as many years – more than a decade of service.
Another advantage of LED bulbs is that they come in such a variety of shapes and physical sizes and are so versatile. They can go inside cabinets, in drawers, under cabinets, in the toe-kick area, on cabinet soffits, along stairways, and many other places to greatly improve the amount of available light in a home – and at a low energy cost to keep them turned on and lit. The more we can illuminate all areas of a home and eliminate shadows, the safer their living space is going to be for our clients to occupy and use it.
For just a few hundred dollars in materials, plus our labor, we can change out the lighting that is present with new LED bulbs. It doesn’t even have to happen all at once if the client is really on a tight budget or doesn’t want the disruption for any longer than necessary at any one time.
Two other simple and inexpensive fixes that we can do for our clients are changing out light switches or controls and the door handles at the entrance to their home and between rooms. Again, this can be broken up into smaller, quicker tasks if the client so desires.
Many homes today are coming with the rocker light switches already because the builder installed them when the home was new or the previous owner put them in. Nevertheless, there still are many homes that still have the older style toggle-type switches with the little projection that needs to be grasped or pushed up or down to activate the lights – compared to the rocker switches which require much less effort and simply are given a light touch to use them.
The lever door handles facilitate use by people even with issues in using their hands or in making a fist because they do not require someone to grasp them to be used. The can be operated with a closed hand, the side or heel of the hand, an elbow, something that is being held, or other ways. They look more stylish and simply are a great solution for people needing to open doors more easily (coming and going or between rooms or closets) on a regular basis throughout the day.