New construction may still be in the slumps, but the market for remodeling is hot. In a recent SeniorHousingNews.com article, The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reports “the remodeling business is in full swing.” Specifically, 68 percent of remodelers are performing “aging in place remodeling,” per an NAHB survey.
Nursing homes, assisted living communities, and retirement villages are expensive, and costs are only going up. As many seniors have likely paid off their mortgages, the cost of adjusting their home to meet their changing needs (i.e. installing a wheelchair ramp or moving to one-floor living) seems to be a more affordable, fiscally responsible option.
However, there are a number of factors to consider when opting for aging in place remodeling over senior care.
First, assess the need. If a health issue that will only get worse as time goes on (for example, Alzheimer’s or a related dementia) is the reason for pondering a care decision, weigh the cost of making the home safe and supportive — along with the possibility of bringing in home care –versus the cost of a senior care community.
Next, try to anticipate how care needs may change in the future. Is it likely that a move to assisted living will be required in a year? If so, perhaps a costly remodeling project is not the best option.