Renovation Rik Feijen 6 september 2021

Life-long learning: rebuild or move?

How long have you lived in your house? Have you just moved in or have you been living there for decades? If you have a nice house, you probably want to live there as long as possible. But do you ever wonder how life-proof your home is? A home that is fit for life is a home in which you can continue to live: now and later. As we grow older, our living preferences change. A large garden may be less important than a safe bathroom.

If you want to live in a life-proof home, you can do two things: move to a ground-floor home or adapt your own home. Both options have advantages and disadvantages. What the best choice is depends on your own living wishes.

Do you want to renovate?

Many people over 55 prefer to adapt their home rather than move. For example, they are used to the neighbourhood and don't want to leave. Moving to a home that is suitable for life in your own neighbourhood is often difficult. There is not enough supply or there is no house available at the moment. Besides, many people have fond memories of their own home. They prefer to stay at home for as long as possible. Adapting one's own home can also be financially advantageous. For example, if you have already paid off your mortgage in full or in part. By moving, the monthly costs may increase. Especially when you pay for the adaptations (in part) with municipal subsidies, adapting a house is often cheaper.

Or would you rather move?

Yet in some cases moving house can also be a good solution. When you find a suitable home that is adapted for life, moving house can be easier than renovating your own home. You then only have to arrange the move instead of various adjustments and renovations to the house. By moving you can also realise other housing wishes. Perhaps you would like to live on a smaller scale now that the children have left home or keeping all the rooms clean is too much.

The life cycle home

There is no such thing as the ideal home suitable for the assisted living facility. What a home that is adapted to the different stages of life means differs from person to person. It depends on your changing living wishes. There are, however, general points that regularly recur, such as the stairs. For many people, walking up the stairs is one of the first things that become difficult. A stairwell-free home is then a new wish or even a requirement for the home. If you don't want to or can't move to a ground floor house, a house lift or a stair lift can help you. However, the price of a stair lift is generally lower than that of a house lift.

Furthermore, many houses still have thresholds that pose a risk of tripping over. This is relatively easy to adjust and is usually no reason to move. In some cases, however, the floor has to be re-laid. The location of the house, however, can be a reason to move. A wish for a life-long home is often a central location. The supermarket, the family doctor and suchlike must be easy to reach, either on foot or by public transport.

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