Wall Ovens – Easy open doors

Bosch side opening wall oven

Wall oven with side opening door

Just like a microwave - sideways opening doors

Just like a microwave – sideways opening doors

Last year Bosch introduced it’s Benchmark Series double and single wall ovens available with either left or right hand side-opening door options.    These side-opening door wall ovens have been popular in Europe for some time now and are gaining popularity.   Mounting these ovens at just the right height for the user provides the perfect ergonomic solution to assist with cooking and keeping reach level at an easier comfortable height.   The side-opening  doors open out and away from the body allowing one to reach in and grab a dish without scorching your forearms as a conventional oven inadvertently always seem to catch you at least once a year!

When planning for new appliances review the newer ergonomic options available

Arcadian Lighting presents: Interiors For Seniors

Arcadian Lighting presents: Interiors For Seniors   Great article reviewing Interiors for Seniors room design elements and nice lighting.  Pictures are stunning.

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Accessible Living Design and Aging in Place floor transition ideas.

Aging in Place professional for assisting with older parents home living spaces.  We evaluate individual needs for height, reach and mobility distances.  Kitchen and Bathroom Planning and Design specialist with lower counter tops, wheelchair accessibility, flush floor transitions; call for a Plan of Action consult and start the Aging in Place design concept with an eye for finer detail.

Wood Floors – for Kitchens now being seen in Bathrooms

 

We are often asked what flooring to install in Kitchens and our recommendation is that the flooring of choice for over 15 years along the Northeast corridor is wood flooring.  Wood floors provide a warmth in appearance and texture, are easy to clean and if you drop something it may not break and most important they are not as taxing on your physical body.  Hardwood floors have natural variation in grain and texture and add warmth to any room or space.  They are hard enough to withstand daily living, will last for 25+ years and may be refurnished many times to maintain appearance (green design).   In Kitchens we select beautiful area carpets, with griper padding to cover major pathways and standing areas which add acoustic value and splashes of color.  At the kitchen sink if you are having standing issues you can get anti-fatigue mats and use them as padding under your beautiful area carpets.  Wood floors may be sanded, refurnished, recolored and brought back to their original lustre many times over their life span.  One never tires of the natural look of hardwood – it is the greener choice and your feet will thank you.

Farmhouse Kitchen - Wood Floors with Classic White Cabinets

Farmhouse Kitchen – Wood Floors with Classic White Cabinets

Now with Aging in Place being high on the minds of most remodeling projects designers are moving away from the old adages that wood floors were not used in bathrooms.  What if you had a flood or the tub overflowed with small children playing.  These are the typical excuses why bathroom design has always utilized tile flooring.  We are seeing more and more upscale bathrooms – homeowners where the kids have grown, being designed with Luxury Vinyl Tile wood plank  flooring.  The warmth of real wood adds much peace and calmness to any space that a cold tile will never accomplish, additionally your feet, ankles and knees will thank you when they no longer stand on a hard cold surface daily.

Master Bathroom < Idea House Photo Tour

Master Bathroom < Idea House Photo Tour - Southern Living

– Southern Living.

Tile floors while beautiful with many selections, designs and patterns are very hard underfoot, always cool to the touch (no barefoot comfort), slippery when wet and everything you drop generally breaks.  Our main concern with Tile floors is that they are not good for people’s knees, ankles and feet. Standing on a tile floor provides undue stress on your body and most people stand in the Kitchen quite a bit cooking and cleaning.  Tile floors are work nicely in areas of the country such as Florida, Texas, Colorado, etc. where higher temperatures and increased air conditioning needs benefit from the cool surface of tile flooring.

The latest porcelain tile designs, growing at a spectacular rate include porcelain tile that looks like real wood.  The simulation is incredible in that the tiles actually do look like real wood.  Porcelain tiles are at least twice the cost of a LVT wood floor, heavy for floor loading and they are cold under foot;  great for pets who love to lay on a cold surface.    They can crack under undue heavy pressure and are not easily repaired.  Tile floors always have grout lines which are a constant source of maintenance.  Keeping grout clean is a homeowner’s nightmare and generally the tile floors need replacement in 10-15 years. Newly laid tile flooring is beautiful however the grout needs cleaning and replacement over time, within several years the color or design style will be out of date and you or the next owner will replace the floor; ripping it up & throwing the tiles into a landfill if not reclaimed by a quality recycling manufacturer.

If you love tile floors you can always add radiant heat with an additional cost to the remodeling project, additional energy usage and one more maintenance item for your home.  Save these beautiful upgraded porcelain tiles for the shower walls.

Remodeling your bathroom – think Luxury Vinyl Tiles in Wood Plank versions for a classic, elegant timeless look that you will not grow tired of.

 

Aging in Place and Universal Design Ideas

Handicap Corner Accessible Sink (ADA)

Handicap Corner Accessible Sink (ADA)

The latest buzz with the 1st wave of the baby boomer generation just turning 65 revolves around our ever-growing Senior population and where they choose to live or retire as they grow older. Everywhere you look there are articles relating information on the care and home facilities for our aging parents. Today family members are scattered across the country and not available to assist on a daily basis with the care of their elder parents. Long term care insurance is an ever-growing market segment with insurance and financial planners leading the cause.

Elderly parents generally wish to live in their current homes as long as possible where they have their network of friends, neighbors and social circles. Remodeling the home they live in for their limited mobility, sight issues and comfort assists many seniors with performing daily chores more independently allowing them greater quality of life. Simple remodeling solutions to current home designs and planning will make most homes livable and comfortable for many years until skilled nursing care is required.

Aging in Place Checklist

Flush Floor Transitions Wood Floor w/ Granite Tile Border

Flush Floor Transitions Wood Floor w/ Granite Tile Border

1.    Main level Bedroom and Bathroom

2.    Universal Plumbing Faucets, Knobs, Door Handles, etc.

3.    Proper Lighting for sight impairment

4.    Flush Floor Transitions and proper flooring material selections

5.    Wider Door widths and circulation space

6.    Kitchen & Bath countertop heights & reach movements

7.    Walk or Roll in showers with seat or bench

8.    Grab Bars properly located

9.    Closet coat poles within easier reach and open shelving details

10.    Grade level entrance to home

Powder Room - Hall Flush Transition Tile-Granite-Wood

Powder Room - Hall Flush Transition Tile-Granite-Wood

Current economic times and many homes under water is encouraging homeowners to invest in remodeling their existing home to accommodate their needs as they Age in Place, or should they need to move Mom or Dad in to assist with their care. All home remodeling projects contemplated today should incorporate the Aging in Place or Universal Design features mentioned above as a basic standard level of construction. Grab bars needs not be installed but the blocking support should be in the wall when the time comes. There are also many newer Grab Bar options that are not institutional looking and designed as attractive design elements. Universal design does not need to be institutional looking with the ever-growing selections of attractive products that are entering the market. Creative detailing and handsome product selections that fit Universal Design criteria only add to the remodeling project and most people would never guess that the home was designed for Senior Living.

We provide a simplified 1 ½ hour Design, Planning & Remodeling Consult outlining for you a Plan of Action to make your home livable for years. Included are Design Sketches, Construction Details (or how to build), Material & Finish suggestions, Universal Design fixtures and ideas. Before hiring the contractor start with a Planning Consult to review detailing specifics and options available to make the most of your remodeling dreams.