A zippy elevator and roll-in shower: Aging-in-place remodel is pretty, fun - OregonLive.com

Karen Amann Talerico and Ted Amann are in their early 50s and may seem too young to consider renovating their house to make it accessible to someone who needs help getting around. But age isn't always a factor. Mobility is. It could be a temporary issue, such as a broken leg after an unfortunate fall. Or something more serious and long lasting, like a chronic illness. Years ago, the couple quickly added a ramp from the driveway to the front door after Talerico had surgery for brain cancer. With walking difficult, Talerico lived on the ground floor of their 1948 Southeast Portland house for two years until she was finally able to maneuver upstairs and to the basement. During this time, the couple decided to make major renovations to their house. They needed it to support them as they got older and they faced future health issues. "We had looked at moving to a single-level home, but we love our location at the foot of Mount Tabor and decided we'd rather turn it into the home we need for the next 20 to 30 years than move," says Amann Talerico. Neighbors and a strong connection to the community were other factors in their decision to spend $250,000 to continue to live in their home, adds Talerico. Every day, 10,000 baby boomers celebrate their 65th birthday and some are considering their future living arrangements, including transforming their home into one that will accommodate them for life. Aging in place considerations can be a simple as adding nightlights and grab bars. Today, the Amann's remodeled house has features and finishes worthy of a home magazine spread. Beyond their attractiveness, these universal design elements will prevent or lessen the impact of falls or help them up stairs and through doors. The couple applied knowledge and experience from their careers to their remodel. He's a nurse and she's a retired nurse researcher and scientist who specialized in gerontological nursing. They have seen the consequences of falls and illness, and knew what was needed to ease into aging. Yet they didn't want their home to look like a hospital. It's a classic look for vintage homes and cork mitigates the impact of a fall. via www.oregonlive.com


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