What would you say are the most important things a trade professional should consider as they design and build their homes?
The following is a transcript of the video "Key considerations when designing and building a home: A PCBC Conversation" :
Nigel: What else can a builder put in to make it easier later on?
Beth: So we have a silver, gold, and bronze list of features that have been developed in universal design and in that it's very specific for each of the areas of the home. And so it talks about if you're doing this level, here's what you would put in. Much like what we talked about with rocker switches and those kinds of things. So I would recommend that folks look at the silver, gold, and bronze list and really understand how easy they're already doing what they're doing in their design and construction. I'd bet a lot of those things already meet what we're looking for.
When you're putting in a sink or a lav, you know, doing a rear drain on that. That allows you, moving forward, should you need to sit underneath that, to have a 90-degree wrap for your pee trap. That allow that then to have the drain on the back of the lav.
Nigel: So Beth, when you did your house, was it a brand new house or was it a retro-fit?
Susan: It was a brand new house.
Nigel: It was a brand new house.
Susan: Well it was a townhouse but we were able to change the inside to our desired specs.
Nigel: So did you do everything or did you, sort of, future-proofed your house to add some of these elements later on?
Susan: I did not... We basically did them from an aesthetic standpoint and they just turned out to be good.
Beth: See, you're smart.
Susan: My husband had a health issue and they were thinking about moving him from a hospital into an assisted living care for his rehabilitation and I said, "Well, why do we need to do that?" And they said, "Well, we need to put him in a safe environment." And they came out and looked at our home and because we had done things that I did strictly from an aesthetic standpoint, they looked at it and said, "This is a safe home. This is a safe environment." And part of that was the balcony off the master bedroom where he could go out and sit and get fresh air without having to go down the stairs, and all of the things that I thought I was just putting in for an aesthetic standpoint, ended up being basic things that the nursing staff was looking for aging, not that he's aging, but it helped his rehabilitation. So we saved him having to go to a rehabilitation center for a week or two, and he loved being home. They actually felt he had recovered and regained his strength much more strongly at home than he would have in an unusual environment.
Beth: That's a perfect example of quality of life.
Nigel: So you're obviously, you're still in your house, right?
Susan: Excuse me?
Nigel: You're still in your house now?
Nigel: And how long has it been?
Susan: We've been in it about 15 years.
Nigel: 15 years?