As we age, our needs change – but where we live doesn’t have to. While some seniors may move to accommodate mobility challenges, it’s equally possible to stay right where you’re comfortable. “This is typically called ‘aging in place,’ and involves making your home a safer, healthier place to live as you ease into the next phase of your life,” said Wendy Cline, J&B Construction co-owner.

Keep your doorways accessible

If you have (or anticipate having) a walker or wheelchair, maneuvering through doors is a challenge for homeowners. Doorways must be wide enough that a walker or wheelchair can comfortably get through them. “Thirty-two inches in width is the standard doorwaysize, but you want to stay over 36 inches to ensure comfort and maneuverability,” said Wendy. “If you’d rather not widen the doorway entirely, offset door hinges can expand the available space by up to two inches.”

Furthermore, it’s a good idea to minimize the height of the threshold, if your doorway has one. Since these can impede wheels rolling over them and present a stumbling hazard, it shouldn’t be any higher than a half-inch. Removing it entirely is the safest option, however, if possible.

Make your doors easy to open

If you’ve got French-style patio doors, you might want to consider replacing them with sliding doors, which prevent you from having to step back when opening them from either side. Swinging doors, especially entry doors, should swing away from you as you enter the home through them.

Doorknobs should be re-evaluated as well. “Conditions such as arthritis make them more difficult to use compared to lever-style handles, or the fixed handles on a sliding door. Replacing doorknobs is easy, and your hands and wrists will thank you in the long run,” Wendy said. Keyless locking systems are also worth considering, as these are convenient regardless of age, but even more so if fiddling with a faulty mechanical lock would irritate your joints.

Let the sun in

When planning for a limited-mobility lifestyle, it’s easy to focus on doors and stairs and overlook your windows. Natural light looks and feels great, and studies have proven the existence of many health benefits. “If staying indoors is safer for you, don’t compromise on sunlight, said Wendy. “Installing larger windows in areas you plan to spend a lot of time in will give you more energy, improve your mood, and help you sleep.”

In addition, like sliding doors, modern windows have accessibility options that make them easier to open and close than with traditional cranks or pull-cord blinds.

J&B Construction is glad to partner with you in creating a comfortable, healthy living space. We have an extensive catalog of doors and windows to fit both your needs and your tastes, and expert, hassle-free installation. Contact J&B Construction for a complimentary consultation today.

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 The only complaint I have is when I have J&B do my roof in another 30 years or so, is Dave their sales man (a great guy) would not guaranty I could get the same great crew I had this time. They did a fantastic job. Much better than the last roofing company did. A nice bunch of guys. Did a very nice job cleaning up. I'd give them 10 stars but 5 is the limit. If you need a roof done this is the company you want to do it. One more point I need to make. The guys that did the chimney flashing are artists. I went up on the roof when they were done and was very pleased with not only the roofing job but the sculptured sheet metal work. It's kind of a shame it's on the roof and not hanging on the family room wall :). You get the point. Hire em. You'll like em. 
 We live in a historic designated neighborhood and recently had our 30 year wood shingle roof replaced with another wood roof and new gutters. From Day 1 of the project to the final day, the entire team was responsive, professional, and very competent. When some minor changes were proposed by us they quickly and effortlessly complied. After going through this experience with J&B, I would highly recommend them to anyone considering a roof and gutter replacement, whether it be a simple or complicated project. 
 J & B did an amazing job from start to finish. The initial meeting at my home took place exactly at the time that was agreed upon and Scott was thorough in his explanations and transparent about costs. When the time came to begin the project, the team that showed up was friendly, professional and timely in getting the project done. The cleanup afterward was such that it looked like they hadn't been there at all. The roof looks great, there were no surprises and Scott came by to inspect the work and explain the warranty upon job completion. I would highly recommend them. 
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Serving Homeowners Throughout The Milwaukee Suburbs & Southeast Wisconsin
J&B Construction

W140 N10589 Fond du Lac Ave, Unit C
Germantown, WI 53022
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262.437.0537