Jun 16, 2021

Growing Older - Making Your Home & Life Retirement Friendly

During the last three years, we have watched many of our friends deal with serious illnesses requiring hospital stays and or even die.  We too have had minor surgeries that were not as serious.  What we have learned is that people over 65 really need to be prepared for what may come their way.  My grandfather used to say in Italian that growing older was like the bull poking you with his horns everyday.  In many ways, it is true.  So, thinking that life will go on business as usual is not realistic once we turn 65 or older.  

It is time to look around at your home to make it retirement friendly.  It may even be time to move to a one story house preferably in a warm climate if you live in a place that gets a lot of snow.  Falling is the biggest risk for older people that often leads to major health issues and surgeries.  So at all costs everything must be done to avoid falling.  If you live in a two story home, as much as possible, you should try to convert it to one story living.  So bringing the washer and dryer upstairs is a good idea if it is currently in a basement. Not hard to do with stackable units.  

If you can create a master bedroom suite on the first floor that would be good too.  Some people install the stair elevators to allow for going up stairs easier.  That can be done quickly so no real need to do it sooner than necessary.  However, bathtubs should be converted to showers with grab bars and a bench.  You are probably saying, I don't need any of these things right now.  Sadly, we have learned that everything can change in a day.  

Next, simplify your finances.  Make sure that both husband and wife can deal with your finances if the one managing them today is suddenly gone.  There are so many situations where a remaining spouse is clueless about their finances.  And, once the spouse managing their money is gone, it can become very stressful.  It should not be that way and with a little planning it does not need to be chaotic.  The time to deal with growing older is NOW.  So, make a check list of To Do's and get them all done.