Difficulty navigating the bathroom plagues anyone with balance, strength, or mobility problems. Whether you currently have a mobility concern or simply want to age in place, an accessibility-oriented bathroom remodel can make life much easier for you. Here are a few things to think about when considering upgrading your bathroom to suit your needs:
Figure Out Finances
A bathroom remodel is a great investment, but statistics from Fixr indicate it can also be a fairly pricey one. Make sure you have the budget to support your project before you get started. Do some research to get a sense of what the remodel you’re looking for typically costs in your region. Always assume your remodel will be on the pricier end of any ranges – best-case scenario, you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
If you don’t already have the money set aside for the remodel, one option is to apply for a PennyMac refinance. You can secure a refinance which replaces your mortgage with a larger one and gives you the difference in cash. It’s a great option for those who need fast financing to support house upgrades, and you can even apply for enough to pay off credit cards at higher interest rates.
Evaluate Your Needs
Think critically about what kind of bathroom upgrades you need. Can you safely step over a tub wall or is a curbless shower more practical? What about when the floor is wet, would it make sense to have non-slip tiles installed? Do you need a space to sit down while taking a shower? What about your showerhead, do you need one that’s movable and within easy reach? Examine your options and ask yourself, honestly, whether those features would make life easier for you.
It’s important to look toward the future as well. If you have a degenerative disability, you should consider what kind of accessibility needs you’ll have down the road. After all, ideally, you’ll only need to remodel your space once. Getting it right the first time will make your transitions in the future easier, both physically and emotionally.
Find Trusted Contractors
When it comes to an accessibility remodel, U.S.News notes trustworthy contractors are vital. Older people and those with disabilities are frequent targets for scam artists and shoddy workmanship. Make sure you avoid this by doing your due diligence when it comes to hiring your workers.
One way to make sure your contractors are familiar with accessibility renovations is to get a recommendation from your local disability services. These resources can point you toward someone with a proven reputation and experience doing the work you need. Having a contractor who knows how to work with people with disabilities will ensure your comfort and confidence in the remodeling process.
Balance Home Value Where Possible
An accessibility remodel is often a vital step for safely navigating one’s home, but unfortunately, it can sometimes lower the value of the property. There are several ways you can work around this and reduce the impact of the upgrade on your home’s market worth.
For example, if you have multiple bathrooms, consider only altering one. Keeping a traditional tub and shower in one of the rooms can make your house more appealing to potential buyers down the road.
If you only have one bathroom, look into making the upgrades as aesthetically pleasing as possible. Ultimately, however, your safety and comfort are more important than sales value down the line. Prioritize that above all else.
Have A Backup Bathroom
Last but not least, make sure you have a plan for how you’ll use the bathroom and shower while the remodel is happening. If you have a second bathroom, this may be fairly straightforward. If you don’t, however, it may make sense to live with friends or family while the bathroom is being upgraded, or you might need to establish an alternative arrangement at home.
Once your bathroom remodel is done, you’ll be pleased to find you have an easier and safer time managing in your home. Making your house accessible is a massive life improvement, whether for your current circumstances or your future ones. Enjoy your home knowing it’s made with you in mind.
Written by Hazel Bridges
Creator of AgingWellness.org