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Research shows that nearly 90% of adults over age 65 want to grow older in the comfort of their home — and understandably so! Perhaps you’re one of them, or you’re concerned about a family member. Either way, it’s never too early to plan and prepare.

Here are five steps you can take right now to prepare for the transition.

1. Try intergenerational living

A fresh take on roommate living, homesharing is when two unrelated people live together and split household expenses. Intergenerational homeshare services like ours help connect homeowners with seekers, typically students or young professionals looking for low-cost housing in exchange for an agreed-upon level of support (with things like household chores, transportation, pet sitting, etc.).

2. Make home modifications

You don’t need to spend a fortune on renovating your home. Luckily, there are many age-friendly adjustments you can probably tackle yourself, such as:

  • Installing grab bars
  • Adding outdoor ramps
  • Converting your bathtub into a walk-in shower
  • Replacing old carpets with new flooring

3. Leverage smart-home technology

Smart-home devices can be there when you can’t. These devices provide on-call 24/7 monitoring for a safer and more secure environment, including:

  • Security systems, video doorbells, and contact sensors that notify you when doors or windows have been left open
  • Smart lighting for dark hallways and entryways
  • Smart smoke detectors that can also alert friends, neighbors, and caregivers
  • Smart emergency contact systems that can detect falls and other medical emergencies and send help automatically

4. Hire a professional caregiver

There’s nothing wrong with using an in-home caregiving service to assist when you’re in a pinch. In-home care options range from live-in nurses and companions to regularly scheduled visits from medical professionals.

5. Downsize, declutter, and organize

If you’re preparing your home for a new roommate, take time to sort through old belongings and decide what to keep, toss, donate or sell. And remember to organize as you go!

By planning ahead, you can help aging parents and loved ones stay in their homes as long as possible.

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