As they get older, many people crave familiarity. This is especially important in such an uncertain world and can often encourage ageing Australians to stay in their familiar home rather than trying to downsize. Yet, if they do plan to live out their golden years in the property they have occupied for a long time, they may need to carry out certain modifications. In society, this is known as ageing in place, but what is one of the key modifications to consider in this situation?
Unfortunately, people do become less mobile as they get older and may find it particularly difficult to deal with a traditional staircase. As time goes by, the stairs may represent a significant obstacle rather than a simple means of getting to a bedroom, and there could be an increased risk of falls and significant injury.
Alternative to Stairs
While there are many factors to take into account when modifying a home to allow you to age in place, perhaps one of the most important will be an alternative means of getting up the stairs. One solution here is to install a lift, and if you're going to do this, you should definitely ensure that it is completely accessible.
Remember, with advancing age may come significant mobility challenges, and you or your partner may eventually become confined to a wheelchair. While this is not a pleasant scenario to envision, it does make sense for you to plan accordingly if you are going to the trouble of installing a lift.
The best place to add one of these wheelchair lifts is in the stairwell area. For example, in a larger home, you can install a purpose-built shaft and hide the mechanism in an area under the stairs. Several different mechanical solutions are available, including hydraulic or a more simple "traction with chain" drive. They are generally simple to operate and designed to last for a lifetime, but there are many choices, and you should talk with any other interested parties before you make your decision.
So, while you may definitely crave familiarity and want to stay in your family home, you do need to look as far into the future as possible and make some modifications now. Reach out to contractors who offer wheelchair lift installation, and they will explain all the options once they have looked at the layout of your property.