Designing a Bathroom for the Elderly: A Comprehensive Guide

by | Apr 30, 2024 | Aging in Place, Bathroom, blog, Custom Remodels, How to, Remodeling | 0 comments

Designing a bathroom for the elderly involves careful planning and consideration to ensure safety, comfort, and accessibility. Whether you’re looking to renovate for yourself or a loved one, this guide will help you navigate the process from start to finish, specifically focusing on options available in the Greater Milwaukee area.

Where to Begin the Remodeling Process?

When planning a bathroom remodel for older people, start by assessing the current bathroom’s layout and features. Consider the specific needs of the older adult who will be using the bathroom, such as mobility limitations or visual impairments. Key features to think about include:

  • Non-slip flooring: Choose slip-resistant tile or vinyl flooring to prevent falls.
  • Grab bars: Install these near the toilet and in the shower or tub area to help with balance and prevent slips.
  • Walk-in tubs or showers reduce the need to step over high thresholds, making it easier and safer to bathe.
  • Higher toilets: These are easier for individuals with limited mobility.
  • Good lighting: Ensure the space is well-lit to aid visibility, which is especially important for those with impaired vision.

Who Handles the Selections: The Remodeler or the Remodeling Company?

In a bathroom remodeling project for older people, the selection of materials, fixtures, and overall design elements is typically a collaborative process between the homeowner and the remodeling company. Firms like Design Tech Remodeling often have experienced designers who guide you through the selection process. They can recommend the best options that meet both the aesthetic preferences and the functional needs of the elderly user. These designers work closely with the remodeler to ensure that the chosen elements are properly installed and integrated into the design. It’s important to be actively involved in this selection process to ensure that the final outcome aligns with your specific requirements and expectations for safety, ease of use, and style.

Remodeling Firms Specializing in Bathrooms for the Elderly

Several remodeling firms in the Greater Milwaukee area specialize in making bathrooms more accessible for the elderly. Design Tech Remodeling is a go-to firm that offers comprehensive services tailored to enhancing bathroom safety and usability for seniors. They have experience integrating aging-in-place design elements that not only cater to the elderly but are also stylish and functional for any user.

Choosing the Right Remodeling Firm

To select the best firm for your bathroom remodel, consider the following steps:

1. Research local companies: Look for firms with specific experience in remodeling bathrooms for the elderly.

2. Read reviews and ask for references: Check online reviews and ask the firms for references from previous projects similar to yours.

3. Verify credentials and certifications: Ensure the firm is licensed and insured, and check if they have any certifications in aging-in-place design.

4. Consultation: Schedule consultations with a few firms to discuss your needs and get a feel for their approach and professionalism.

Expressing Your Needs

When you meet with remodeling contractors, be clear about the needs and preferences of the elderly person who will use the bathroom. Discuss any specific concerns, such as mobility issues or any medical equipment that needs accommodation. It’s important to communicate openly to ensure that the final design is both functional and comfortable.

How an Elderly-Friendly Bathroom Adds Value to Your Home

Upgrading your bathroom to accommodate the needs of the elderly is not just about immediate functionality—it’s also a strategic improvement that can enhance the overall value of your home. Here are a few ways that this type of renovation can add value:

1. Broader Appeal: By incorporating universal design elements that cater to all ages and abilities, your home becomes accessible to a wider range of buyers. This includes families with elderly members as well as those planning for future needs, thereby broadening the appeal of your home in the real estate market.

2. Future-Proofing: As the population ages, more homeowners seek properties that can accommodate their changing needs without requiring significant future renovations. Homes with already-modified bathrooms fit this bill and can command a premium.

3. Safety and Comfort Enhancements: Features such as non-slip floors, grab bars, and walk-in tubs are seen as high-value additions because they enhance the safety and comfort of the home. These improvements can be particularly persuasive for buyers looking for a “move-in ready” home that doesn’t need these critical updates.

4. Reduced Insurance Claims: Bathrooms designed with safety in mind potentially reduce the likelihood of accidents, such as falls. This aspect might appeal to savvy buyers who are conscious of long-term risks and costs associated with home ownership.

5. Energy Efficiency and Modern Features: Often, remodeling for accessibility includes updating fixtures to newer, more efficient models. Features like water-saving toilets and LED lighting attract environmentally conscious buyers and can also help reduce utility bills, adding another layer of value.

Integrating these upgrades can transform a standard bathroom into a key selling point of your home, making it not only more marketable but also potentially increasing its sale price.

Updating a bathroom with elderly-friendly features can be a wise investment. While the specific impact on your home’s value can vary, many buyers appreciate universal design features because they make the home more accessible to people of all ages and abilities. In most cases, such renovations are seen as upgrades that can make your home more attractive in the market.


Designing a bathroom for the elderly requires thoughtful consideration of safety and accessibility. In the Greater Milwaukee area, Design Tech Remodeling is an excellent choice for anyone looking to make these important modifications. By choosing the right firm and clearly expressing your needs, you can ensure that the remodel will enhance your home’s functionality and value, making it a safer and more comfortable place for the elderly to live. Contact Design Tech Remodeling to learn more how this award-winning design-build firm can help you with your next remodeling project.

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