Monday, October 10, 2016

"National Aging In Place Week Begins Today"

For the 11th straight year, the National Aging-In-Place Council (NAIPC) has sponsored the National Aging In Place Week. This year, it begins today, Monday, October 10th.



Interestingly, it falls right inside the "National Physical Therapy Month" and the "National Kitchen & Bath Month" also. Great timing!

As our thoughts and interests turn more to being inside with the cooler weather approaching, taking care of safety, comfort, convenience, and accessibility inside our homes and those of the people we serve becomes even more important. 

Also, it won't be long before we get into Thanksgiving and end-of-the-year holiday celebrations where we are decorating our homes (potentially creating accessibility and safety issues) and inviting friends, neighbors, and relatives to be with us to enjoy the festivities.

With kitchens and baths having a focus this month as well as our interest in observing Aging In Place Week, this is a great reminder to focus on the two principal areas of the home (kitchens and baths) where most of the activities in the home occur, where there seems to be the most interest in terms of decorating and remodeling, and where accidents are the most likely to happen.

We can have such a huge impact as aging-in-place professionals in helping our neighborhoods and our clients to be safer in their homes by helping them evaluate their current situations and making sensible recommendations for them to complete themselves or for us to have a hand in performing.

Aging-in-place is an ongoing activity that likely is never totally completed or fulfilled - there always seems to be some fine-tuning or adjustment that can be made as people's needs evolve and change over time.

With the continuing interest in aging-in-place activities, the demand for attaining the Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist (CAPS) designation, and the frequent discussions online and those reported from other venues, there is no shortage of interest in having people modify their homes, or at least remain in them, as they seek to continue living in their present homes as long as possible.

The National Aging In Place Month is a tribute to all of us that design, envision, and create solutions for people to have greater fulfillment in their current homes, and it is a strong validation of the consumer demand to have such solutions created.

People want to remain living where they are for three primary reasons: (1) they really like the neighborhood, the setting, the general layout of their home, and how they can get around in the space - it essentially is friendly and comfortable for them in terms of the space, (2) the economically cannot afford to replace what they have because land costs and building costs have accelerated since they purchased their property and it would be prohibitive for them - not to mention the costs associated with selling their present home and hiring movers, and (3) they simply have too much stuff and too many memories where they are now to seriously entertain any thoughts of trying to pack up and move to another home.

There present homes may not offer the safety, comfort, convenience, accessibility, visitability, and security they are seeking or that they would like to have, but for all of the reasons just cited will continue to remain living where they are. Our mission then is to help as many as we can do this in the most efficient and effective way possible.

Use this week to inspire us into action!

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Steve HoffackerCAPS, C.E.A.C., MCSP, MIRM, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.