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Bathroom Remodeling for Accessibility in Multi-Generational Homes


A curb-less walk-in shower with seating.

Some people remodel a bathroom for the sole purpose of adding a bit of their own style. Sometimes, a bathroom is remodeled to make space for a new addition in the family, or for the opposite reason: when a child has gone off to college and parents can finally focus on building the home they’d love to retire in. Of course, larger families have different bathroom needs than smaller families, and it becomes tough to choose a bathroom style and configurations once there are two or more generations living in the same household.

If the older, wiser generation in your household needs a little bit of help navigating the space in your home, the bathroom is the best place to start. Follow our tips for finding an accessible bathroom (without sacrificing the décor) with a bit of help from remodeling contractors.

Walk-In Showers and Tub Designs

While tubs may be best for homes with small children, they become less necessary as we age. And senior citizens will have a hard time moving in and out of a tub, which is why it’s usually best to upgrade to a curbless walk-in shower that’s easy for everyone to use. Adding a bench is certainly helpful as well, as is a built-in shelf to keep soaps within reach.

If you have children and older generations in the home, consider designating an upstairs bathroom for bath time, while remodeling downstairs bathrooms for easy use for all generations.

Sinks and Faucets

If you have a multi-generational family living in the home, you must take time to assess the little things as well as the larger challenges. Sinks are often too low for those with disabilities or who have trouble bending down, so this is certainly something worth upgrading in a bathroom remodel. You should also consider handles instead of knobs, though a touch-free automatic faucet would be best.

Comfort Height Toilets

Toilets tend to be too short for many older folks as well, and getting up afterwards can be a challenge. We recommend comfort-height toilets to those looking for a solution. While these toilets are only a couple of inches taller than a standard toilet, they make all the difference. Still, you may need to combine a new toilet with a rail or an extended seat to make it easier to get on and off.

Storage Options: Drawers Vs. Cupboards Vs. Shelving

If you’ve been storing many of your bathroom essentials in under-the-sink cabinets or low pantries, you’ll quickly learn that this is not an accessible area for someone with limited mobility. Accessing these requires a person to bend over and stoop to search, while a drawer can quickly reveal all of its contents for a much easier reach. We recommend drawers over cupboard doors wherever possible.

Open shelving may be an even better option. There are plenty of ways to make open shelving stylish with accent pieces and attractive baskets. Just be certain there is nothing blocking access. For example, open shelving over the toilet only may be tough to reach.

Contact the licensed and insured contractors at Advanced Builders & Contractors for complete bathroom remodeling in Los Angeles, CA.

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