As senior population is growing and baby boomers age, the demand of universal home design is heating up nowadays. Universal home design is a way to build a home to be accessible to many people regardless of age or ability. The design usually includes convenient features like zero-step entryways, wide hall ways, lower cabinets, waterproof bench in the bathroom etc.
According to the 2011 U.S Census Bureau’s report, The Older Population:2010, Hawaii’s senior population is increasing faster than any other states in America. Furthermore Urban Honolulu area ranked first with the highest percentage of its population in 85 years and older in the whole country. It has a high percentage of 65 years and older population and ranked fifth as well. It seems those older population will be back to real estate markets as they look for downsized and single level houses. Here we have a general check list for universal home design. Be ready for universal design as a long term investment for the home itself!
-Is main floor at ground level?
-Is the home single level? – no sunken floors or split levels
-Are kitchen, bath, Laundry room and at least one bedroom on the main floor?
-Does interior/exterior floors smooth and slip resistant?(Especially bathroom)
-Does level walkways with no slopes? If any sloe, is it gradual?
-Is it easy to open windows for natural light?
-Is it easy to access to kitchen cabinets?
-Are there grab bars in the bath, shower and near toilet?