If you’ve been considering a remodel, there’s a good chance that you’ve heard the term, “universal design.”
While universal design has been around for decades, remodeling for accessibility has recently evolved into a growing trend. Whether due to the growing number of baby boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) or the fact that homeowners are simply looking to fit their home for better functionality, universal design is here to stay.
Because universal design elements provide convenience and functionality benefits, the term has a tendency to be misinterpreted; leaving many to believe it’s only for those who are aging or having disabilities.
This theory is simply not true.
We’re here to set the record straight because absolutely everyone can benefit from a space that is universally designed and created to maximize comfort, convenience and accessibility.
Think back to a time when you were running late and had your hands full; using your foot to push down on a leverage-style door handle would have been much more convenient than setting everything down and twisting a door knob. Laugh all you want, but we’ve all been there.
In our experience, universal design elements are often not requested unless the client has a direct need for them, which makes sense. However, we also know that those clients who may not think they have a direct need for these elements, are inevitably missing out on added convenience and functionality in their home.
Here are five universal design elements that may already be playing a role in your home:
- Leverage-style door handles
- Pull-out drawers
- Motion sensor faucets
- Curbless showers
- Slip-resistant tile
As you probably noticed from the list above, all five of those design elements are meant to make your life easier in some way.
In our opinion, the most valuable advantage to universal design is that it provides convenience for literally everyone who walks into your front door, regardless of their age or circumstance. Moreover, it provides homeowners the flexibility and longevity throughout their lifetime while they live in the home, allowing them to enjoy their homes longer without having to move.
If you’ve incorporated universal design elements in your home, we’d love to hear what they are. Please share your opinions below in the comments section.