: Dream of aging in place? This government program could be a game-changer for seniors

by | Aug 4, 2022 | Stock Market

In 2015, the housing authority in Bath, Maine, created the Comfortably Home program after seeing the maintenance challenges that older people and those with disabilities faced in the challenge of continuing to live at home. “We kept hearing that the housing wasn’t working for the residents, but they didn’t want to leave. They’d say ‘the only way you’re getting me out of here is feet first in a pine box’,” Bath Housing executive director Debora Keller said. “Meanwhile, the waiting list to get into Bath Housing units was two years long. We had to do something to help residents live more safely and longer in their own homes.”

The small Bath Housing program has worked on about 300 homes in the Maine coastal city of 8,760 residents. The idea has rippled across the state and has been replicated in 14 of Maine’s 16 counties and sparked the idea for a national effort called the Older Adult Home Modification Program through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Keller said.  Comfortably Home installs handrails and shower seats, repairs stairs and windows, provides weatherizing, upgrades lighting, and installs carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors, among other safety measures. Home entrances like stairs or ramps also get fixed, allowing for safer egress. Finding contractors a …

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