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Old 04-17-2015, 09:21 PM
 
950 posts, read 714,835 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hotfeet View Post
A potential flip side argument is that the stairs may keep you in shape in your twilight years - whether you like it or not, you will need to climb those stairs at least once each day. My parents bought a house in a retirement village that was on one level and it wasn't long after that stair climbing at other venues (such as my house when they visited) became a challenge since they weren't using those muscles on a daily basis and those muscles became weak. Similarly, all of the electrical outlets at their new home were located about 24 inches or so above the floor. It looked weird, but the thinking from the retirement village was that some folks have trouble bending over, so it would be better to keep them high to suit everyone's needs. My opinion at the time (which I kept to myself) was that bending over is good to keep one's flexibility and it might be best for one's health (not everyone, but for at least some folks) to keep the outlets at a normal, lower height and get more stretching in a daily routine.

Regardless, I appreciate the opinions expressed above -- especially for folks that have broken a hip. I think it would be best if your home at least allows to you to live on one level when it becomes necessary.

I wanted no stairs.

I have a weight bench in my carport
I do calesthenics in my carport

I have beautiful scenic roads to go on my regular 2 mile walks


If I am healthy ...........no problem
If I have health problems...........I am already prepared ( no stairs)

The worst possible reason to have a house with stairs is because it keeps you in shape.
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Old 04-17-2015, 09:37 PM
 
1,569 posts, read 580,683 times
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Hello everyone! I guess I'll jump in here. My late MIL had a nice townhouse with three finished levels, 2 and 1/2 baths, with the 1/2 bath on the first floor. When her mother needed to move in, they just installed a stair-lift for a couple of years. After Grandma died, they sold it. Forward another 23 years or so, and now MIL can no longer climb the stairs. Again, the stair-climber folks are called, and she used it maybe a year. MIL had a straight stairway, which was a huge benefit, because installation and cost is lower. But I have seen tv commercials and they show them going abound bends and curves, so I guess they work almost anywhere.....I agree, an extra bedroom and full bath on the first floor is the ideal situation.
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Old 04-17-2015, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
21,539 posts, read 44,010,725 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VJDAY81445 View Post
The worst possible reason to have a house with stairs is because it keeps you in shape.
Yup - or a house w/anything that makes you bend/twist because it will "keep you flexible." Baloney on that.

Back in the day I had a fridge w/a bottom freezer. Refrigerators w/bottom freezer built today no longer fit in the kitchen alcove - so I've had to buy refrigerator w/a top freezer and now risk putting my back and hip out everytime I go into the vegetable bins, or look for something not on the top shelf. Not your average 5' 4" woman - I am almost 5'11" - so this IS a problem. Bending/reaching/twisting for me isn't necessarily always wise. I go to the chiropractor often enough, as it is. One wrong move and it's another visit. Osteopath once told me I am hypermobile - which means ligaments are too flexible. Bending these days, I can actually hear the vertebrae in my spine move - this a multiple-times a day occurrence. One of the hazards of being tall, I guess.

Same for climbing steps. Right hip tends to go out - ortho says it's something in my lower discs. Before I go up the steps, I take my fist, push on hips and lower back, and then make sure back is a bit concave, and I'm standing very upright - no hunching over. Doing this puts everything in alignment and makes going up steps much easier.

I'll be hollyhock's MIL some day. As I said upthread - unlikely I'll move, so it could very well be a stair lift for me eventually.
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Old 04-17-2015, 10:05 PM
 
1,734 posts, read 1,949,340 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nor'Eastah View Post
...

A few months back, I purchased another piece of land, in Tennessee. This weekend, I will head down there to have a modular home delivered and set up. This one will also be one floor, with 3 beds and 1.5 baths. Plenty of room for family to visit. The grandkids love to camp, and will bring their tents.
Nor, I know you to be a reasoned and resourceful person. I am a lazy person (well, not really - but if I can learn from somebody else's research and experience, so much the better, lol!). IMHO, a modular house is just what the doctor ordered, when I get to the point where I can leave commuting radius of Metro DC.

I don't even know where I'm going to go. BUT I like the fact that modular houses are built under controlled conditions. I'm particularly struck by the fact that the only house left standing after the last Galveston hurricane was a modular house, built to "hurricane" specifications. IMHO, if one can find a manufacturer who uses durable materials (like Hardee board for siding), this would be the way to go.

I suspect you researched the heck out of modular house manufacturers. I ask very respectfully and not meaning to be nosey - Which ones might you recommend for a person such as myself, who prizes durability, and function over form?

Thanks much for any information you might be willing to share!
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Old 04-17-2015, 10:44 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,932,349 times
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We wanted nothing to do with second story when we moved in retirement.
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Old 04-17-2015, 11:07 PM
 
13,319 posts, read 25,561,639 times
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I designed my 1250 sq.ft. house to have everything important on the first floor- laundry, main bed/bath, living and kitchen. The upstairs loft is a guest room/bath and dusty exercise equipment and some storage. I'm 62 and working fulltime, but five years ago, I had a severely infected dog bite on my right ankle and couldn't go up a single step for a week (and was very limited for several weeks after that). I was very grateful for my foresight in the design!

I've seen townhouses with two main bedrooms/baths, one on the first floor, one on the second. It does seem that a lot of THs have a garage and entrance on the ground floor and then a lot of steps just up to the living area, then more steps to bedrooms and full bath. If I had to look for another place to live, I'd go for a post-war ranch on one level (a lot were built then, at least in my area).

I wince at those who say "The stairs are good exercise." Until they're not, until they're an impediment, a danger or an impossibility. It's a shame to have to move out of a house or area that you really like just because of the steps. Anyone can break an ankle or have minor surgery and not be able to jump around- you don't have to be old or permanently debilitated or something. My dog bite proved that to me.
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Old 04-18-2015, 07:26 AM
 
5,392 posts, read 6,535,307 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jane_sm1th73 View Post
Nor, I know you to be a reasoned and resourceful person. I am a lazy person (well, not really - but if I can learn from somebody else's research and experience, so much the better, lol!). IMHO, a modular house is just what the doctor ordered, when I get to the point where I can leave commuting radius of Metro DC.

I don't even know where I'm going to go. BUT I like the fact that modular houses are built under controlled conditions. I'm particularly struck by the fact that the only house left standing after the last Galveston hurricane was a modular house, built to "hurricane" specifications. IMHO, if one can find a manufacturer who uses durable materials (like Hardee board for siding), this would be the way to go.

I suspect you researched the heck out of modular house manufacturers. I ask very respectfully and not meaning to be nosey - Which ones might you recommend for a person such as myself, who prizes durability, and function over form?

Thanks much for any information you might be willing to share!
I would be curious as well. One that I have researched is Blue Ridge Homes in Campobello, SC but I am not sure I will go that way. Too vacatioiny...


Back on topic. Just returned from a visit to Scotland and climbed all sorts of stairs inside and out. I always got a chuckle that the UK folks would say "We are fit, we climb stairs" and they would then just move up and around those stairs. So maybe there is something to it as part of a lifestyle and maybe genetics.

It was brutal but when I returned I found leg muscles long forgotten. Still I would opt for one level living preferably modular.
Get my exercise in elsewhere.
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:03 AM
 
47 posts, read 103,863 times
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Thanks for all the responses. Consensus seems to be bedroom and bath on the main. I am philosophically aligned with Escort Rider in that why plan for the worst, how are the extra bottles of water going to help in the coming zombie apocalypse. But it looks like the scenario where you would need everything on one floor is not the worst case but the likely case.

I will look into TH's with master on the 1st floor. Or even a single-level condo in a building with an elevator. My personal requirement would be somewhere where I don't have to do any yard work at all...Thanks again.
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:17 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX and Las Vegas, NV
5,697 posts, read 4,420,516 times
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I broke my ankle in 2012 at the age of 62. We lived in a 1-story house that had a sunken livingroom and even that one step was difficult. I recovered, however. But that experience guided me as we bought our condo. I would have loved to have an urban townhouse so I'd have a private garden for our dog. But all the city condos and townhouses with gardens were more than a single story. So we live in a one-story condo and have a choice between elevator or stairs. But, even as we are now having the master bathroom renovated, the doorways and shower stall will be ADA compliant/handicap assessible even tho we don't need it now.

So I agree that there should be some space which can be used as a bedroom on the first floor of a house. More important there should be a full bathroom (or one that can be enlarged) on the first floor.
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Old 04-18-2015, 09:49 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,605 posts, read 31,482,868 times
Reputation: 29071
We bought a single story house in retirement on purpose. Good thing we did. I strongly recommend it. I also recommend wide hallways and doors just in case and large enough bathrooms to accommodate "helping" amenities.
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