Aging-In-Place and Universal Design

“Universal Design” is the design of environments to be useable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.

Traditionally, many homes were tailored for an imaginary “average” person – a healthy, fit young man of average height. Universal design uses simple, proven ideas to make any home more comfortable for a wide range of people:

  • People who want to stay in their homes as they grow older
  • People who want to simplify their housekeeping
  • People who are taller or shorter than average
  • People who use wheelchairs or walkers


In plain English, aging-in-place means remaining in one’s home safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age, income or ability level. It means the pleasure of living in a familiar environment throughout one’s maturing years, and the ability to enjoy the familiar daily rituals and the special events that enrich all our lives. It means the reassurance of being able to call a house a “home” for a lifetime.

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) in partnership with the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) developed the Certified Aging In Place Specialist (CAPS) program – the leading national educational designation designed to teach professionals specifically how to modify homes for aging in place.

Whether you are remodeling your own home, or addressing the needs of your family members, we can design improvements that can make day to day living safer, more comfortable, and increase the likelihood of remaining independent.  Some modifications that we can provide include:

  • Relocating living quarters onto the main floor (bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, laundry)
  • Barrier free showers/bathrooms with easy access for wheelchairs
  • Replace knobs with levers on doors and faucets for easier gripping
  • Additional handrails/grip rails/grab bars to improve safety
  • Stepless entries for easy accessible entry
  • Enlarging parking and access areas for ease of movement
  • Widening interior doors and hallway openings for easy wheelchair access
  • Change light switches to from small toggle switches to larger flat panels for ease of use
  • Add additional lighting in hallways, stairs and work areas to minimize the risk of falling
  • Cabinet modification for easier access
  • Slip resistant flooring to minimize falls
  • User friendly appliances
  • Installing stairlifts for easy, safe access to multiple levels within the home

As a Certified Aging In Place Specialist, Coast View Construction has the skill, training and experience to perform all necessary modifications for aging in place.