Top 2018 Home Improvements You Can Make as a Senior
By Katherine Oakes, Modernize
Whether you’ve been in the same home for years or your small space simply needs an upgrade, home improvement projects can feel intimidating, or even impossible for anyone. Home projects often conjure images of hard manual labor and heavy lifting. However, every home needs some sprucing up once in a while and there are plenty of home improvement projects — big and small — that you can do to make a difference.
So here are several easy and accessible ways to upgrade your home at any age, from the inside out.
Start in the Kitchen
A good kitchen can definitely make a house into a home. Especially if you are a grandparent, you’ll want a home where hearts and bellies are always full. A sparkling and updated kitchen makes a world of difference, and the good news is that there are a few quick and easy ways to do so without serious manual labor.
- Floor makeover: When was the last time you gave the kitchen floors a good cleaning with a handheld mop? It’s a great way to clean when bending or getting on hands and knees feels too risky, and even polishing the tile will make it feel like new again. Over the years, the kitchen floor gets a decent amount of wear and tear, so a regular cleaning will keep it in good condition.
- An easy refresh: Replacing the hardware on all the handles of your cabinets and drawers with a more contemporary design will help make your place feel like new again. If you prefer a more traditional look, pick out a style that you love but will also make it somewhat modern. This way, it’s easier for potential buyers to see everything they don’t need to do if and when it’s time to sell. Take it a step further and give your cabinets a fresh coat of paint or a nice glossy finish—to match your sparkling floors, of course.
- An often-overlooked detail: Now give your backsplash a close look. Since it’s at eye level, your kitchen’s backsplash is often the first thing to catch your attention, and an upgraded backsplash is certainly something to notice. If it’s in your budget to do so, replace the old tile with new or at least give it a good cleaning.
These days, gallery walls are all the rage and a great way to frame all of your favorite photos or mementos in one place! Find an open space on a large wall (or if you’re willing to part with them, take down the old ones) to arrange frames of different shapes, sizes and colors on your gallery wall. Start by laying them out on your floor to get a better scope of the design’s look and feel, then choose photos, artwork or even cherished items to frame. Hang them up yourself or call a professional if getting up on a step ladder makes you feel unsafe. Some home and decor vendors like West Elm offer in-home services and even a tutorial on how to create your own work of art!
It might sound funny, but a little shrub can make a big difference when it comes to increasing the value of your home. Nice landscaping can immediately make your home seem more attractive at first glance, which is helpful when it’s on the market. If you’re concerned about feeling unsteady or taking a fall in the backyard with no one nearby, consider hiring help from within the neighborhood. In addition to having them around for the heavy lifting, it’s also a great way to get to know your neighbors while enjoying some sunshine and fresh air. Plant a garden and add some shrubbery for a full and abundant look. Most importantly, plant trees! Not only does this release more oxygen into the atmosphere, but planting larger trees for shade can help decrease your home’s cooling costs, which will make your house more energy efficient.
For a different alternative to big landscape projects, consider planting window boxes you can see from inside to brighten up your home’s exterior. Not only does this make your home happier, but even the sight of flowers makes your brain happier, too! According to the Huffington Post, “Researchers from Wageningen University in the Netherlands studied restaurant diners and found that people with fresh flowers on their tables seem to be in better mood.” Snip a few stems from your window box and bring them inside for an instant mood booster.