Posts

Elder Friendly Room Design

Elder Friendly Home Design

Are you thinking about redesigning your home to make room for a parent or grandparent who is moving in? Here’s how to design a safer and less stressful multigenerational home.

 

With the rising cost of assisted living facilities, many senior citizens are choosing to stay in their homes longer. The trend to “age in place” is growing in popularity along with the trend for elderly parents or grandparents to move in with their children and grandchildren.

When two generations share a home they can usually live cheaper collectively. Whether it’s contributing rent or serving as cost-free daycare, move-in parents can help ease the family’s cost of living while avoiding the isolation and higher expenses of living alone.

The three major factors to consider when remodeling a senior addition to the family are safety, comfort, and costs. By sitting down with an experienced home remodeler you can find creative and affordable solutions.

Design for safety. As we grow older, we tend to lose flexibility and balance. Senior citizens are more likely to have fall related accidents and suffer significant injury from falls. Therefore, we want to look for ways to reduce the likelihood and severity accidents.

Talk to your builder about installing slip resistant flooring. Remove high-gloss flooring tiles and cover polished floors with carpeting, where possible. While throw rugs are nice decorative touch, they can cause slips and falls. Wall-to-wall carpeting with thick padding will reduce the risk and impact of falling.

Staircases are a particularly dangerous place for senior citizens. Consolidate living space to a single level to make it safer and less strenuous. When you can’t get away with single-level living, make sure stairwells are well lit and free from any tripping hazards. Securely anchor handrails in hallways. Consider installing a stair lift.

Remodel bathrooms for safety, as well as comfort. Replace bathtubs with walk-in stall showers. Have professionally installed safety grips installed by toilets and inside the shower. Your remodeler should be able to recommend safety grips that are both effective and aesthetically pleasing.

Design for Comfort. Make sure your elderly loved one has a comfortable living environment, and not just a safe one. Many families are choosing to remodel their homes with two separate living areas. A home designed with two separate living areas, but not as a legal two-family rental is sometimes referred to as a “secondary suite” or a “mother-in-law house.” In the Northeast, this type of layout called a mother-daughter house.

Consult with your local building code so that you don’t inadvertently modify your house into a two family home without the proper permits. Two separate entrances allow the senior to have more privacy and independence without feeling as if they are living on top of the family.

It’s important to redesign your home with reselling it in mind. Poorly modified homes often require lots of renovation. Follow proper interior designing principles when adding safety features or your senior living area might end up looking like a hospital ward.

Separate thermostats will keep everybody happy. Seniors often feel the need for more heat in the winter and less air-conditioning in the summer than younger people do.

With a separate entrance and living space, seniors can have more control over the look and feel of their homes. The buffer between living spaces will let you enjoy your sleek and modern design without clashing with that tacky recliner Grandpa doesn’t want to give up.

Countertops should be higher than normal to reduce stooping and bending while shelves should be lower to avoid overreaching.

Make sure you have good lighting. Incandescent light fixtures are better than fluorescent bulbs because they produce less glare. Light switches should be illuminated so they can be found in the dark. Plug nightlights in hallways or mount motion sensitive light switches.

For additional safety and privacy, install an intercom. An intercom will allow for easy communication without intruding into each others living areas. Additionally, get a medical alarm or senior alert system so that an elderly relative can summon help when no one else is home.

Home Design Costs. Home remodeling is not cheap, but there are several ways to finance. A reverse mortgage can help pay for renovations, but only if the senior continues to live in the mortgage home as a primary residence. Before taking out a reverse mortgage it’s important to consult with a qualified, unbiased financial and legal adviser and not just a mortgage salesperson.

Thanks to ElderKind.com for these tips on safer living spaces for senior citizens.

saw stop

Could Making Power Tools Too Safe Mean We Lose Our Respect For Their Risks?

When it comes to safety, power tools are among the safest things that you have in your home. This is because everybody knows how dangerous they are and generally treat their drills, sanders and tabletop saws with the utmost respect.

You may have seen this amazing film of the safety device fitted in table saws which stops the motor in a fraction of a second when it comes into contact with human (and sausage for the purposes of demonstration) skin. Of course such a rapid deceleration is disastrous for the machinery but wouldn’t you rather lose an inanimate piece of machinery than a few fingers?

Like the airbag in your car, it’s a device you have and you rely upon in case of emergencies but you’d prefer never to have to try it out wherever possible. But could it result in power tools becoming more dangerous?

Not more dangerous intrinsically but practically. Because we know how dangerous power tools are we don’t play with them, we don’t use them where there could be a potential risk to our health and safety but such a safety device could lead to people becoming just a little more laissez faire when it comes to their own safety.

Now, certain parallels could be drawn between this brake and the attitude toward the parachute that the British high command held during the First World War. They held that such a safety device would make pilots be less brave and therefore less effective as they would be bailing out at the first sign of trouble. They didn’t recon on the pilots avoiding trouble in the first place and the hideous injuries these men sustained as a result of falling out of the sky in a burning wreck of wood and fabric.

But safety in the air or on the road isn’t solely dependent on parachutes and airbags, these are a last resort which save lives when the very worst comes to the worst. Accident prevention saves more lives than figuring out how to limit the damage that occurs in the worst case scenario.

Of course I’m not suggesting that people will be sticking their hands into the paths of drills and saws left, right and centre but an over reliance on safety devices instead of respect for your tools and observing all the commonsense and practical safety advice could lead to some people becoming a little less careful than they otherwise aught to be.

Vijay Pandey

You might think I’m being overly cautious. No-one’s really going to start taking less care with their power tools just because they’re actually safer to use are they? Well, power tools have always been seen as Big Boy Toys and to some extent that has been proven in the new design that Bosch has for their latest line in battery operated drills and screw drivers, looking more like ray guns than ever before, and it’s when people become complacent with safety that accidents happen. Designing a power tool to look like a toy could be the step too far that health and safety precautions in the home didn’t need.

@DanCash is always on the look out for real deals on power tools but the cost of safety devices is something that should never be compromised

Please Keep Your Child On A Leash

14 Ways to Make Your Home More Kid Friendly

Statistics have shown that most accidents really do happen at home. Whether you have small children of your own or you have children visit, you should take steps to keep little ones safe.

Below are a few simple things that you can do to make your home safe for kids.

1. In Case of Emergency

Emergency phone numbers should be written down and posted in an obvious place, preferably by the phone. All children in the home should be taught when and how to use any of these numbers.

2. Practice Fire Safety

If you don’t have working smoke detectors near every bedroom, get them now and test them every month. Also, consider placing a fire extinguisher in your kitchen to help stop fires before they spread. Like smoke detectors, though, you should check the fire extinguisher’s gauge every month, since an ineffective fire extinguisher is basically useless.

3. Be Smart About Carbon Monoxide

Carbon Monoxide is a deadly odorless gas that is produced during the combustion of  fossil fuels, like natural gas and propane. Elderly adults and children are generally more at risk of dying from carbon monoxide poisoning, so carbon monoxide detectors should be installed in your home as well.

4. Turn Your Hot Water Down

In homes with children, hot water heaters should be set no higher than 120 degrees F. A water temperature any higher than this can cause nasty burns.

5. Turn Pan Handles Back

Small children can also suffer very serious burns if they pull a hot pan off of the stove. Rotate pans so that the handles are turned toward the back of the stove when you’re cooking.

6. Place Kid’s Cups, Bowls, and Snacks Within Easy Reach

Instead of storing these items in high cupboards, store them in low cupboards or drawers. If they are within easy reach, kids are less likely to climb onto counters, which can result in dangerous falls.

7. Wipe Up Spills

Spilled liquids, like water and grease, can cause adults and children to slip and fall. Wipe up any spills immediately.

8. Lock Up Liquor

Alcohol poisoning in children can be fatal, and leaving liquor or any other type of alcohol within easy reach is just asking for trouble. If you have alcohol in your home, keep it under lock and key or place it out of reach.

9. Store Cleaning Products Properly

Most cleaning products contain dangerous chemicals that can cause chemical burns, blindness, and poisoning. Store cleaning chemicals in high cupboards out of reach of children.

10. Remember That Medication is Not Candy

Never refer to any type of medication, including cough drops and vitamins, as candy. Small children who believe that medicine is the same as candy could possibly overdose.

11. Invest in Non-slip Bath Mats

Another common cause of dangerous falls is a slippery bathtub or shower stall. Rubber or vinyl mats can be placed on bathtub and shower stall floors to help prevent accidents.

12. Cover Unused Outlets

Small children could possibly insert very small objects into unprotected outlets. Plastic outlet covers are relatively inexpensive, and they can help prevent electrocution.

13. Install Night Lights

When walking through dark hallways or rooms, it is typically very difficult for children, as well as adults, to see what’s on the ground in front of them. Tripping over objects on the floor can cause them to fall and get injured. A few night lights in bedrooms and hallways allows children to see and avoid any obstacles.

14. Clean Up Clutter

Whether it’s light or dark, clutter on the floor can also cause a child to trip and fall. Picking up clutter throughout the day and before bed not only makes your home look more appealing, but it can also prevent accidents. Purchasing large catch-all baskets for each person in your home can make de-cluttering simple and quick.

15. Tie Up Blind Cords

Dangling blind cords are often a source of constant amusement for many children. Unfortunately, these seemingly harmless cords can be quite dangerous, especially if they get wrapped around a child’s neck. Instead of leaving these cords hanging down, tie them up out of reach.

Marina writes for 1001Shops an online store of retail specialty products like silk flowers, tiffany lamps, etageres and lot more.

Always Grill In A Well-Ventilated Area

Grilling Safety Tips for Your Outdoor Living Area

As outdoor cooking areas and patios become more and more popular, families are spending more time hanging out and preparing meals around an outdoor grill. While grilling season may be slowing down, there’s no reason to forget how to safely prepare a meal on the grill. This is especially important when it comes to outdoor patios and grilling areas because when there is a lack of rain, the leaves, trees and grass becomes very dry making them more prone to catching on fire. Here are some timeless tips for handling propane grills.

Do not smoke around propane

This should go without saying, but it’s the most important thing to remember. You don’t smoke at a fueling station, and you shouldn’t smoke around a propane tank, no matter how big or how small. This will not only keep you safe, it will keep your family safe as you spend time preparing a meal. Whether you are buying or installing, never smoke when handling a propane tank – period.

Always grill in a well-ventilated area

Propane is a gas and can accumulate in a garage or kitchen just like any other gas. Always follow your grill’s instructions and make sure you are grilling outdoors in an area that has constant airflow. Make sure that the area around the grill isn’t covered by anything or touching the grill itself. This is important to keep in mind when remodeling or adding additions on to your house. The area in which you grill must be very open in an effort to stay as safe as possible.

Inspect your equipment

Before you even turn on the grill, make sure you check your tank for any signs of damage that could cause a leak. If there are any bulges, dents or evidence of corrosion or rusting, do not use your grill. Get the old cylinder replaced immediately. Check your hoses for any signs of cracking or decay as well. If you see any, it’s time to replace the hoses.

Check for leaks

Even if all your equipment checks out, there still could be a leak. By using a leak-detecting solution, you can find any previously undetected leaks. Your local propane dealer can provide you with the solution and information about how to properly use it.

Properly put away all tools

When you are done grilling, be sure to properly put away your grill and tank. Let your grill completely cool, first and foremost – then disconnect and cover all hose fittings and burner air intakes with small plastic bags or, ideally, fitting caps (these can be obtained from your local propane dealer). This will keep any dirt, bugs or moisture out of your fittings while the grill is not in use. And, don’t forget to cover your grill.

Consider each of these safety tips as well as the area around which you plan to cook before firing up the grill. It will prove to be beneficial to the overall safety of those around you!

Alabama Propane Exchange specializes in propane cylinder deliveries for forklifts & commercial lawn mowers. They also offer bulk propane delivery, wholesale propane delivery, propane racks, LP storage tanks and other propane delivery in Mobile, AL

Contractor With A Couple Of Plans

A Quick Quality Check for your Home Improvement Choice

While many home improvement product manufacturers and companies tout the eco, pet, and child-friendly nature of their products, it is still important for consumers to do some quick research for themselves to ensure that these products meet acceptable standards of safety and eco-friendliness.

You might start by checking for any certifications relating to environment and health. If a company itself, or its product or service, is certified by a recognized organization, this will likely be highlighted on the company’s website or in other communication forums. So, before purchasing a home improvement product, be sure to do some research to see if the product’s manufacturer, or the product itself, has received any certifications acknowledging its safety and greenness.

At Granite Transformations, we are proud to tell our customers that our company and products have been certified by several renowned organizations, for our commitment to the manufacture of products that are safe and environmentally friendly Continue reading “A Quick Quality Check for your Home Improvement Choice” »