As your parent ages, living independently can prove to be a challenge. If you’ve decided to bring your parent into your home, you may need to create a space for them that’s a bit separate from your immediate family. Thankfully, you can transform a garage space into a room for your elderly parent.
Once everything is cleared away and the structure is bare, you’ll have some room to work with. Keep reading for some tips on how to turn your garage into a relaxed environment for your elderly parent.
Choose the Right Materials
You don’t want to work with flimsy plastic and cheap materials that break easily. Either wood, glass, or ceramic can work well and help you create an interesting, vintage atmosphere for your elderly parent’s room. The benefit of this room is that you don’t have to go overboard on the home decor. Simply make sure to include the right assortment of furniture that’s comfortable and calm on the eyes and gives a nice touch to the room.
You may also consider hardwood flooring for the garage-turned-room. In 2019, the volume of hardwood flooring sales in the United States amounted to 1.58 billion square feet, showing that hardwood flooring is a popular option – and for good reason. Your parent can add rugs to the sleek hardwood floor, it’s durable and easy to clean, and it’s long-lasting, which is ideal for a parent that’ll be living there for a while.
Adjust the Lighting Accordingly
For the most part, you’ll have to know as much as possible about your elderly parent’s tastes to know how they feel about lighting. Maybe elaborate setups with chandeliers and the like aren’t the same. Or, maybe having a few bulbs here and there isn’t enough to keep your parent’s room feeling as comfortable as they’d like. The idea is to understand that the lighting in the space should be dim enough so that it’s not blinding but bright enough to support any activities or other hobbies they do.
Optimize for Safety
Safety should be one of your top priorities when designing a room for your elderly parent. Considering the health risks and potential for accidents, safety should be at the top of your list and stay there. Start by adding a few feet of space between furniture to allow for more walking room. However, you’ll definitely want to make sure the environment isn’t too cluttered or filled with stuff.
Going forward in the garage renovation, keep in mind what you think your elderly parent would consider regarding their safety. If something is a risk, it’s better off to think of a different idea. Remember, an estimated 70% of people currently turning 65 will require some form of long-term care in their lifetime. So, you’ll have even more responsibility in making sure the room is safe as your parent gets older.
Be Generous with Storage
Make sure you have enough space for storage in your parent’s new room. The reality is that your parent will need to store collectibles, important items, documents, and gifts that they’ve accumulated over the years. Would you really want to take the risk of having to have all those materials unaccounted for? There aren’t enough excuses in the world to justify having to throw away large amounts of possessions simply because you didn’t include enough space to store your parents’ items.
On average, a garage door will open and close three to five times per day. This puts a tremendous strain on a garage door opener over its expected 15-year lifespan. A garage door isn’t the way you’ll be storing your property anymore. Your aging parent now has room to store their stuff in, so be generous with the amount of space you give them. To keep their stuff safe year-round, winterize the space and rid of an overhead garage door. Invest in new walls and a new door for the space.
Turn your garage into an ideal room for your parent with the tips above. Ask them for their input so it can be transformed into a beautiful, safe, year-round space that’ll give them privacy while conveniently on your property.