Whole Home Blog

Planning key for Aging in Place

Posted on June 25, 2012 by kim

Aging in place planning for quality of life

The focus of aging in place is to help seniors ensure they can live where they choose and get any help they need for as long as they can. It is more than that, though. The goal of an elderly person (or anyone) wanting to age in place should be to maintain and/or improve their quality of life. In order to do that, a good plan that focuses on your quality of life and covers your self, home, finances, care and other items should be created as early as possible. This plan should be maintained over time as your situation changes. Whole Home's Certified Aging in Place Specialists (CAPS) can help you with this plan and connect you to other services and partners you may need while in the planning process.

Aging changes

When do you start planning? It's never too soon to think of your golden years, but many people wait until their circumstances suddenly change. It is important for to consider and plan for the changes that will happen and what impacts these changes will have on your life or the lives of your loved ones. As we age, our bodies and capabilities change. Examples of changes you might experience are:

  • Reduced vision
  • Decreased muscle strength or endurance
  • Reduced mental processing capabilities
  • Increased risk of falls due to balance
  • Increased risk of illness
  • Reduced hearing
  • Decreased mobility

Planning early as possible means you will have a greater chance to control your quality of life and independence. Connecting to resources such as Whole Home also presents you with an opportunity to lessen the burden on your family by outlining how your needs are met.

What does it mean to my family?

Issues that families will continue to have to deal with include home remodeling (accessibility, universal design), personal support (balancing work and family responsibilities of caregiving), and common problems like budget, finding resources, caregiving solutions and more. All of these issues will need to be dealt with in a way that empowers those aging in place and their caregivers, so everyone can make informed decisions about their lives and care. A Certified Aging in Place Specialist can help!

Aging in place is a choice

To age in place at home, some of the decisions you will need to make include:

  • how long you plan to remain at home
  • if you need major home remodeling or just a few changes, like ramps or grab bars
  • the quality and price of the home modifications you may need
  • what your wishes are for major life events like sudden illness or disability (permanent or temporary home modifications, financial decisions, caregiver decisions)

Making these choices gives you control over your independence, quality of life and dignity. Most importantly to note, aging in place does not mean you have to do everything yourself; that’s where the plan and an Aging in Place Specialist can help! Whole Home has five Certified Aging in Place Specialists ready to answer your universal design questions and help you to plan the perfect accessible home.

If you haven’t retired yet, you have time to think about your needs, research your options and put together a plan that is good for you and your family. If you have retired, putting the time in to building a plan will help keep you in control of your life. Building a plan will help you deal with issues you will encounter down the road and ease some of the burden your loved ones will experience. If you need help building your plan and want to discuss your aging in place options with a Whole Home CAPS professional, please call 482-5100.

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