Thursday, January 21, 2016

"Heading 'Home' Has Such A Nice Sound To It"

After spending the past 6 days in Las Vegas at the International Business Show ("IBS") and "Kitchen & Bath Industry Show ("KBIS"), it is great to be home again. Travelling is fun - renewing acquaintances, visiting family, touring sites, exploring new places, attending educational classes, seeing new products, returning to our childhood hometown, taking photos, and the list goes on. Still, there's that great time awaiting us when we return to the comfortable surroundings of our own home.

That's the thing about our homes. They don't have to be that impressive to the entire world. They just have to matter to us. People may not like our decorating tastes. Some people may have a larger or smaller budget and furnish their homes accordingly. Some homes have large yards and others are more compact. Still, they are our homes, and we lay singular claim to them (except for a lender or taxing authority).

Homes come in all shapes and sizes - and ages - from single level, two or more stories, basements, attached or detached garages (for the cars, storage, a workshop, a home office, a studio, a playroom, or an extra bedroom), from brand new to one built in the 1800s.

This idea of looking forward to returning home after a brief absence is quite strong and relatively innate. We feel a sense of longing and a reconnection when we return home - even if that's been a relatively brief time such as with a doctor or dentist appointment, a longer portion of the day such as being at work, a couple of days away from being in the hospital or on a short trip, or a longer time such as on a vacation or business trip or on a cruise.

A person's home conveys a sense of comfort, safety, and security to them. It may not be perfect in all of those areas, and we certainly have a chance, as aging-in-place professionals, to help people's home function more successfully for them.

This is precisely where the concept of aging in place comes from and why it is so powerful. People simply like their homes and want to remain in them. They are loyal to their homes and the idea of living there for the long-term - even when those homes are inadequate to meet their needs. That is secondary to the much larger and stronger concept of people just wanting to retain and remain in their homes - and even if they are renters.

Ever notice the tapestry that proclaims "Home Sweet Home?"


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Steve Hoffacker, CAPS, MCSP, MIRM, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist instructor. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit my website at stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.