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  • Joel P. Ambrose

Aging In Place

As homeowners begin preparing for their golden years, it can become more difficult to carry out daily activities due to physical limitations. The world wants people to believe that 60 is the new 40, but sometimes limitations brought on by decreasing mobility say differently. Aging in Place home modifications are an effective way to improve the quality of life and make homes more comfortable and accessible. Here are three key benefits of Aging in Place home modifications:

1. Increased Safety. Safety should be a primary concern for those who want to remain independent and continue living in their own homes. With age, mobility and balance can become an issue, making falls more likely. Falls are a leading cause of injury and hospitalization for older adults. Home modifications prevent falls by making the home safer and easier to navigate.

Inexpensive modifications like installing grab bars and handrails in the bathroom, near the toilet, and in the shower can help maintain balance and prevent falls. Work with a Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist to ensure that these modifications are Aging In Place compliant. Adding non-slip flooring in the bathroom and kitchen can also reduce the risk of falls.  Removing clutter on the floors and installing smooth transitions between rooms can also help.  LED lighting can also be installed to increase visibility and reduce the risk of tripping.

2. Improved Accessibility.  Mobility limitations can make it difficult to move around your home, especially if there are stairs or narrow doorways. Increased accessibility can be achieved by  widening doorways, installing ramps or stairlifts, and adding handrails.

These modifications allow you to move around your home easier, maintain your independence and reduce the need for and reliance on costly caregivers. Home modifications can also improve one’s social connections making it easier for friends and family to visit rather than you having to go out to meet them.

3. Enhanced Comfort.  As people age, they often find it more difficult to carry out daily activities, such as cooking, cleaning, and laundry. Home modifications can make these tasks easier as well, also extending the amount of time a senior can remain in their home.

These types of modifications may include installing pull-out shelves or Lazy Susans in kitchen cabinets, lowering counters and sinks, and installing appliances at a more accessible height. There are also benefits to relocating the laundry room to the first floor and adding a front-loading washer and dryer which can be installed at a height that is easier to reach and more comfortable to manage.

Investing in home modifications is a proactive and practical way to support and ensure the desire to age in place.

Joel P. Ambrose is the president of HandyPro International, LLC, a licensed contractor specializing in Home Modifications and Professional Handyman Services. Located in Farmington, Michigan, his colleague Keith Paul is a licensed Aging In Place specialist with over 25 years’ experience.   To contact Joel, call 734-254-9160, email, or visit:

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