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Paying for Senior Care

How to Make & Pay for Home Modifications to Enable Aging in Place

Home modifications are physical changes made to one’s home to accommodate for the changing needs of the elderly or disabled, to enable aging in place. As we age, our mobility and physical strength diminish and many aspects of a home that were once functional become difficult. Home modifications can be as simple as changing water faucet handles from knobs to levers or as comprehensive as the construction of an accessory apartment or elder cottage on the property.

Common Types of Home Modifications for the Elderly

There are many different types of modifications that can be made to accommodate for aging challenges.  While not comprehensive, the following list is included to give readers an idea of common changes.

  • Accessory Apartments – both for the elderly and live-in caregivers
  • Climate Controls – installing larger digital displays and / or remote controls
  • Computer Equipment – large screen monitors and oversized keyboards
  • Easy Use Fixtures – oversized light switches and levers replacing or installed over faucet knobs
  • Grab Bars and Rails – in bathrooms and hallways assist persons in preventing falls and improving mobility
  • Lighting – modifications within the home and around the property for increased visibility and security
  • Pull Out Shelves – also referred to as roll-out, glide-out or slide-out shelves, these enable easy access to deeper spaces for clothing, food and other storage.
  • Push Button Door Openers – to automate the opening and closing of doors
  • Security Systems – remote monitoring and personal emergency response systems (PERS). More on paying for PERS specifically.  See our medical alert system reviews here.
  • Smoothing Floor Surfaces – removal of molding, carpeting and anything on the floor which limits the mobility of a wheelchair
  • Software Tools – that enabled increased independence
  • Stair Lifts – also called Stair Glides or Lift Chairs.  Learn more about paying for stair lifts here. See our stair lift reviews here.
  • Traction or Non-Skid Strips – installed most commonly in bathrooms but also anywhere a floor is hazardous or slippery including kitchens and staircases.
  • Transfer Benches – also called showering benches or transfer chairs, these enable individuals to get in and out of showers, tubs and wheelchairs with little or no assistance.
  • Walk in Tubs – seated bathtubs, sometimes wheelchair accessible. Learn more about paying for walk in tubs. See our walk in tub reviews.
  • Weatherization – such as storm windows, screening and air conditioning
  • Wheelchair Ramps – for persons unable to manage stairways. More on paying for wheelchair ramps.
  • Widening Doorways and Hallways – to accommodate for wheelchairs and walkers


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