The number of older adults who want to age in place is growing. By how much? A survey from October 2020 conducted by the National Institute of Ageing and Telus Health revealed that almost 100 percent of Canadians aged 65 and older want to age in place as long as they’re able to.
Aging in place requires modifications to your home so that you can grow old and live independently for as long as possible safely. Which means that you’ll have to have a financial plan that takes into account these home renovations. The Globe & Mail recently reported on the costs involved in updating your home for your aging-in-place needs. They spoke with an expert in the field, David Borthwick, who is a construction engineer technologist and founder of Accessible Solutions in Oakville, Ont. His company offers home assessments and accessible design services. He says one of the first considerations is how safely one can leave and enter one’s home. This translates into a number of potential modifications. He notes bilateral stair rails, a porch lift, a ramp or a stair lift in the garage. Being able to move around easily and safely inside is important, too, of course. With bedrooms often on the upper level of a two-storey home, this may call for an elevator or another type of lift known as a through-the-floor lift.
What you choose depends often on how mobile you are, and the cost will also be impacted by the layout of your home, for one. To get a sense of the costs, however, he says a porch lift costs about $9,000, while a stair glide can range from $4,500 to $12,000.
For more details on the potential costs you’re looking at, along with the room you’ll definitely need to make safe for aging in place (plus insight from one registered occupational therapist and accessibility consultant on how she approaches creating effective and beautiful accessible spaces), check out the Globe & Mail article here.