EP 108 | Living in Place with Erik Listou



About this Episode

No one needs to be reminded that they are aging or have limitations. Our role as designers is to create functional, beautiful and safe environments for all of our clients, regardless of circumstances. In this episode we consider replacing aging in place with living in place.

In this episode we learn:

  • replace negative terminology such as “grab bars” with neutral phrasing such as “towel bars”
  • comfort is key at every age and stage
  • when to use contrast and when to avoid it
  • how we can do better work for our clients through education

Take Aways

Erik’s 5 areas of the home to focus on when it comes to safety and comfort for all. 

1) Entrance

  1. Create a no-step entry if possible
  2. Add outlets top and bottom of stairs to facilitate future chair lift
  3. Add lighting for safety
  4. Avoid a separate threshold

2) Powder Room

  1. Make sure door swings out or use a barn door
  2. Use wide door to accommodate wheel chair in future

3) Kitchen

  1. Use contrast to emphasize countertop but avoid contrast on flooring
  2. Avoid high-gloss counters which reflect light
  3. Use induction cooking
  4. Use a wall oven at eye level instead of an oven that requires bending

4) En Suite

  1. Minimal floor contrast
  2. Avoid shower curbs
  3. Use a linear drain

5) Stairways

  1. Add a handrail on both sides of staircase and extend it beyond the bottom step.
  2. Add lighting inside the handrail and connect it to a backup generator, which will kick on in the event of a power outage.
  3. Avoid bright lights, which diminish vision and choose low voltage lights on each tread or underneath each nosing.
  4. Avoid high contrast flooring choices.
  5. Install an outlet top and bottom of staircase in order to be able to install a chair lift in future.

Design Intervention

Smile and you’ll be amazed at how that impacts those around you.

About Erik Listou

Erik Listou has 50 years building and remodeling experience. He is a developer, subject matter expert, national instructor and co-founder of the Living in Place Institute. He also has a lot of credentials including: CLIPP, CAPS, CAASH, CGR, CGP, CLR, LDST.

Erik has been published in trade journals and consumer publications including WSJ, NYT, WP and AARP. He is a national conference speaker and talk radio host of 125 shows. His expertise combines practical business experience and knowledge into education and awareness programs that enhance businesses and help provide the best service and products for all homes and individuals of all needs and age.

Living in Place, not aging in place.


Recommended Learning:

COURSE: Getting the Job Done Right

COURSE: Expanding the Client Relationship

PODCAST: EP 103 | Your Vibe is your Tribe with Darla Powell





Legal Disclosure | This podcast is for educational purposes only and should not be used for any legal decisions. Kimberley Seldon Design Group, Kimberley Seldon Productions Inc., Kimberley Seldon Design and Media, Inc., Business of Design™, or any of its affiliated companies or staff is not responsible for any errors or omissions effecting accuracy in any content, and they will not be held liable for the use or misuse of information, facts, details or any other aspects should there arise any defects, errors, omissions or perhaps inaccuracies. Extensive research has been conducted to put this podcast together for the purpose of educating our industry in order to better serve the public. Care has been taken to acknowledge ownership of copyrighted material. The advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for every situation. This work is offered with the understanding that we do not render any legal, accounting or other professional advice. Seek the advice of a lawyer and/or other competent professional person in all matters of law. Further, listeners should be aware that internet websites mentioned may change or disappear between when this was recorded and when it was listened to.

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