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Finding Your Ideal Home for Aging Gracefully

Here are some essential features to consider
September 27th, 2023

By Justin Bennett

Approaching your golden years brings new considerations when it comes to choosing the perfect place to spend them.  For senior homebuyers, finding a residence that allows for comfortable and secure aging in place is paramount.  In this article, we’ll delve into several crucial features that senior homebuyers should keep in mind as they embark on this significant decision.

Single-story living

A single-story home is more than just a design choice; it’s a lifestyle adaptation that enhances comfort and safety.  Stairs can become a daily hurdle as we age, with the risk of falls increasing.  A single-story home alleviates this concern, offering a fluid living space that’s easier to navigate.  With everything on one level, there’s no need to go up and down stairs, making your day-to-day life more straightforward and safer.

Exterior maintenance

A home isn’t just its interior.  The exterior can demand considerable time and energy, which you’d rather spend enjoying your golden years.  Opt for materials that require little to no maintenance.  Choices like vinyl siding or brick exteriors not only last longer but also require less effort in terms of painting and repairs.  It’s about making your home a place where you can relax, not a place where chores become overwhelming.

Home warranties

Maintaining a home becomes more challenging — and more critical — as the years go by, especially as unexpected repairs can suddenly arise.  A home warranty can help mitigate these challenges by covering costs related to system failures or appliance breakdowns.  Give this a try if you’re concerned about the financial burden of potential home repairs.  Investing in a home warranty provides a safety net against hefty expenses and offers you a layer of financial security, allowing you to enjoy your home without the constant worry about the what-ifs.

Easing mobility

Mobility concerns shouldn’t mean limited accessibility in your own home.  Installing wheelchair ramps at key entrance and exit points can make a world of difference.  This modification allows for smooth transitions in and out of the house, offering you a degree of independence that is vital for quality of life.

Accessible bathrooms

The bathroom can be a high-risk area for falls and slips, making it an essential room to focus on when it comes to safety.  Features like grab bars near the toilet and in the shower can provide extra support and balance, especially on slippery surfaces.  It’s a simple modification that could drastically reduce the risk of accidents.


Don’t underestimate the importance of doorways.  Narrow doors can be a hindrance for wheelchairs or walkers.  When looking for a home, pay attention to the width of the doorways to ensure they can accommodate mobility aids.  This feature makes a significant difference in how freely you can move around your living space.


Visibility tends to decline as we age, making adequate lighting more than just a design feature.  It’s a safety necessity.  For this reason, it’s crucial to opt for a home that allows plenty of natural light and has well-placed artificial lighting in essential areas like the kitchen, bathroom, and stairways, if applicable.  This strategic lighting setup enhances both safety and comfort, helping you navigate your living space with ease and confidence.

Renting vs. buying

Homeownership might not be for everyone, especially if you’re still testing the waters of where you want to settle during retirement.  The good news is that the rental market has evolved to include more accessible options.  Online listings make it easier to locate homes that cater to specific needs.  From virtual tours to detailed descriptions, you can now find rental spaces that suit your lifestyle without compromising on essential features like accessibility.

The process of selecting a home for your golden years is an exciting but challenging endeavor.  Prioritizing features like single-story living, low-maintenance exteriors, and accessibility options are essential steps in creating a comfortable and secure environment to age in place.  You may also want to invest in a home warranty to avoid expensive repairs.  By keeping these elements in mind, you’re not just buying or renting a home.  You’re investing in a space that will serve as a sanctuary in the years to come.

(Boston, Massachusetts-based Justin Bennett is the creator of HealthyFit.info, a one-stop shop for fitness and nutrition tips, tricks, and resources to help you sort facts from fiction.)


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