Every year, thousands of people are forced to move because their homes contain traps they tend to miss.
When we hear about evictions, it’s easy to imagine a down-and-out family who can’t pay their bills. Maybe it’s due to a job loss, or getting caught up in too much debt, or just a run of bad luck. But these aren’t the only reasons why people lose their homes.
Unsafe homes are dangerous. No, I’m not talking about old wiring or warped floors and ceilings (although these are dangerous too.) Simple things like door openings, cabinet hardware, even area rugs can cause more harm than you’d think.
Right now, let’s talk about how your doors open.
Help, I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get OUT!
Arguably the bathroom is visited more than any other room in the house. As I mentioned in “Are You Comfortable When You Poop?” the average person uses a toilet 2,500 times year, or six to eight times daily. (2) Add showers, makeup applications, shaving, and other tasks performed in the bathroom. How many times in one day do you close that door?
Now – think about your bathroom door. Which way does it swing – in to, or out of, the bathroom? And why is this important?
Safe doors, especially the bathroom door, should swing out away from the room. Why? Because a person can be trapped if they fall inside against the door.
Sounds impossible? Don’t think it can happen to you? Think again.
No matter how old you are, falls happen all the time. In recent articles, I noted statistics from the CDC calculating the frequency and medical costs of falls. You can get more details here.
A lot of these accidents occur in the bathroom. It’s bad enough when someone reaches them immediately. But what if they’re lying against the door and can’t get out? Or those who can help can’t get in?
The Home Safety Assessment – Take a proactive approach.
Loss of independence and dignity are primary reasons why most individuals leave their homes. Too often, it’s a forced move. A Home Safety Assessment shows homeowners where they’re vulnerable. Knowing what to change, and how to do it, gives them the freedom to stay in their homes as long as they wish. Along with saving the costs of unnecessary medical events, feeling safe and secure is priceless! Something as simple as how the door opens can make the difference.
Next, I’ll talk about other common traps we tend to overlook. In the meantime, remember:
- Make your home SAFE for everyone.
- Live happier in your home.
- Live longer in your home, and…
- Spend less for health care.