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Best Flooring for Seniors Using Walkers

by Mike Dodd, Home Remodeling Expert
January 19, 2017

Question: What is the best flooring recommended for seniors who need to use walkers?

Answer: Walkers pose a significant trip hazard opportunity for their users as there are many different types.  Some have stationary legs, some have wheels and some have aftermarket add-on features that are intended to enhance the operation of the appliance.  At the end of the day, any resilient flooring product will suffice.  Budgets will certainly drive the majority of the buying decisions when it comes to selecting the right product.  For our clients, the choices typically come down to sheet vinyl material verses hardwood flooring. Ceramic or porcelain tile are generally not considered due to the fact that they are hard and cold. Sheet vinyl is generally the most cost effective option, but other vinyl materials can be considered as well.  Individual squares or lengths of linoleum products are very popular as are floating laminate floors, although laminate costs begin to approach those of hardwood options. Hardwood is always everyone's ideal choice as it is warm and rich looking in its appearance. Traditional 3/4" tongue and groove hardwood has lost favor over the years due to the mess associated with sanding and finishing it. Pre-engineered hardwood flooring has become much more popular due to the ease of installation, no mess associated with sanding and finishing, time to install and the variety of offerings. Ecologically friendly products like bamboo and cork are examples of pre-engineered products, but more traditional oak is available in a variety of sizes, styles and finishes.  Whatever product is selected demands that a careful home safety assessment be performed in order to eliminate trip hazards like electrical cords and throw rugs.

Mike Dodd is the founder and President of Lifewise Renovations, that combines home remodeling project management with the expertise of health care professionals, to make it possible live safely and comfortably at home regardless of age or physical ability. As a member of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), Mike holds the Certified Aging In Place Specialist (CAPS) designation.

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