Universal Design – A New Wave of Home Building for the Future

While more builders are realizing the importance of offering ways to incorporate green or energy efficient materials into their home building process, these days there is another new and upcoming trend also influencing custom home creation – Universal Design.

What is Universal Design?

The National Association of Home Builders describes Universal Design as, “the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.”

This means whether you are tall, short, young, old, able bodied or living with a disability, your home is built to accommodate various backgrounds and needs and can continue to support you without additional changes being made in the future.

This offers options to homeowners that not only boost their resale value in the future but can potentially save them money and give them the option of staying in their home as they age as well.

Examples in the Home

Universal Design takes into account that there is no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to the needs of families and individuals. Here are some more common components that don’t need to break your budget:

  • Wider hallways and door openings (36 to 42 inches wide)
  • Kitchen work surfaces at different heights
  • Lower light switches and higher electrical outlets
  • Lever door handles instead of knobs
  • Dishwashers
  • Touch-controlled faucets
  • No-step entry allows for people to enter without using the stairs
  • One-story homes that allow for people to access every room without using stairs
  • Open floor plans that accommodate movement including wheelchairs
  • Non-slip surfaces or grab bars in bathrooms
  • Bright adjustable lighting for people with poor vision

A good builder knows that your home is a reflection of who you are and should accommodate not only your current needs but the needs of your future. Discussing what options work best for you and your family is an important part of our education and home building process. Do you want more information on how Universal Design can help you create your dream home? We would love to hear from you!

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