Do you plan on staying in your house for many years to come or do you have an elder relative that wants to stay in their home? Updating a kitchen and keeping accessibility and ease of use in mind is a great way to help age in place.
Make sure proper lighting is in the kitchen to prevent accidents, make tasks easier and help reduce strain on the eyes. A mix of artificial and sunlight are the ideal with natural light being the preferred light source. The light switches themselves should be easily reachable and near all entrances. If possible, a motion sensor light would be best.
Changing out appliances to user-friendlier options can make it much easier to cook. Side-swing instead of swing-down ovens can help the burden of having to bend over the door to retrieve food. Drawer or counter-height microwaves allows for everyone to be able to reach them. When safety is the number one concern, cooktops should be on your mind instead of ranges. When the burners are hot or still on, color indictors on a cooktop will light up as a warning.
It can become difficult to bend down on the lowest rack of a dishwasher to put away heavy dishes. With most appliances that are installed on the floor, you can adjust the height to lift them up. A higher dishwasher or oven can prevent some strain on a back.
You might not think about it now, but even the types of hardware on your cabinets can make a massive difference. The amount of people above 65 with arthritis is 22.7% (CDC Arthritis Statistics). Pulls and cup pulls are much easier to use when opening cabinets rather than knobs. Making this change will be a relief felt every day.
As well as adding pulls and handles to your cabinets you can also lower and raise the counter depending on the needs of the ones who use it. The standard height of 36” could be lowered to 30” at parts for those needing to sit while they use the counter and risen to 42” for those who need to stand. The cabinets themselves should also have pull-down shelves for upper cabinets and pull-out shelves for lower cabinets.
Our design experts here at Keidel have many years of experience in designing kitchens. They can help you transform your kitchen for your aging in place home remodel. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.