Universal Home Design

Turn your house into a place where everyone can feel at home.

Universal design is the idea of building homes, businesses and public spaces that are universally accessible to people of all walks of life. The concept of universal design stems from medical advances and technologies that assist people in overcoming obstacles. But, even if you don’t have limited mobility or perceived restraints, incorporating universal design into your home renovation is something to consider.

If you and your family aren’t in need of a universally designed home then why would you spend the money renovating? Good question! Having your home ready and able to accommodate friends, family and neighbors, no matter what their circumstances are, is always a welcoming gesture. For example, universally designed doorways are wide enough to accommodate both strollers and wheelchairs. Incorporating universal design can also open up new markets if you ever decide to sell your home. Homes with a universal layout are ready for new families, aging seniors and everyone in between!

But perhaps the best reason to incorporate universal design into a remodeling project is that universal design is, in general, just good design. Wider hallways and doorways are easier to navigate; lever door handles and rocker light switches are attractive and offer easier function than traditional switches and knobs; and walk-in showers or room transitions with no steps offer both practical future benefits as you age in your home, and a luxurious feel.

A home that incorporates universal design doesn’t mean that it adheres to all accessibility standards, but it does mean that it has beautifully and seamlessly incorporated features that support a high quality of life for all individuals. Easy entrance and exit transitions, wide corridors, large rooms, open living spaces and spacious bathrooms are a few things that should be accounted for in homes built around universal design.

There are seven principles that govern universal design, which include:

  • Equitable Use
  • Flexible in Use
  • Simple and Intuitive Use
  • Perceptible Information
  • Tolerance for Error
  • Low Physical Effort
  • Size and Space for Approach and Use

Get inspired by these beautifully designed cabinets, bathrooms, living areas, and kitchens and incorporate these seven principles into every detail of your house. Start with the basics; make sure the products and materials in your house meet these seven principles, such as doorknobs and light switches. Then get into the big stuff, such as raising base cabinets, widening hallways, incorporating no-slip flooring and eliminating stairs.

If you are thinking about remodeling your home with universal design, call Firenza Stone at (888) 495-7330 or contact us online and we can help you design a layout and choose materials that work best for your family’s lifestyle.

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