Home Modifications Assisted Living and Universal Design

Learn how to make your closet more accessible for those in a wheelchair, including tips on lower hanging rods, pull-down and swing-down rods, and high-tech clothing carousels. We also cover the importance of ample maneuvering clearance and pullout racks and shelves.

Home Modifications Assisted Living and Universal Design
Universal design home modifications to age in place

Home Modifications Assisted Living and Universal Design

Universal Bedroom Design

  • Make the doorway accessible.
  • Lights and phone accessible to the bed.
  • Easy accessibility to clothes in the closet. Purchase add-on rod that comes with extenders. This rod hooks on to the closet rod that you already have. Add-on rods hang at a lower height. This is important when wheelchair accessibility is necessary.
  • Clear path to the bedroom.
  • If you are planning for the future: Ensure there is ample maneuvering clearance – 45
  • Build a walk in closet. This should provide storage … at different heights Clothing rods should be between 20 and 44 inches above the floor.
  • Consider purchasing a pull-down or swing-down rod. You install this rod at the same height as the rod you have now.

Then, pull a cord or touch a button. Your clothes swing down to your level.

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    Want even more hanging space? Use the pull-down rod along with a regular rod. Install the regular rod at a lower height. You can use the lower rod when the pull-down rod is in the “up” position.

    • For a high-tech closet, choose a clothing carousel. This device runs on a motor.

    Push a button and it brings your clothes to you. You’ve seen these devices at the dry cleaners. Now you can have a smaller version in your own house. You’ll need a closet that is at least 4 ½ feet by 6 feet.

    • Consider pullout racks and shelves in the closet. These make for easy accessibility. There is less bending and stretching to reach things. Make sure that there is enough storage space with in reach.
    Have a story about the home modifications you made or wish you made to help you age in place? Please share here? Help others realize that they are not alone.Submit Your Caregiver Story
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