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These Four Walls... Americans 45+ Talk About Home and Community

Overview

“More than four in five (83%) Americans age 45+ say they strongly or somewhat agree that they would like to remain in their current residence for as long as possible. Even if they need help caring for themselves, older Americans prefer receiving services that allow them to stay in their current home (82%).” AARP conducted this study to determine what this aging population needs in order to remain independent, comfortable, and safe as they age, with a focus on their home, the community in which they live, and the services available to them within their community.

Key Points

Interviews were conducted with Americans age 45+ to understand better what Americans need in order to age in place. Findings showed that a majority of respondents’ are optimistic about the future, both in terms of physical health as they age and having enough money to do what they want in later years and pay for long-term care. A majority of respondents consider themselves planners, but only one-third has given much thought to their future housing situation. Over half of respondents believe they will be able to rely on family or friends for help with tasks that allow them to stay in their home as they age, but over half are not counting on their children to take care of them as they get older. A majority of Americans 45+ believe they will be able to stay in their current home for the rest of their lives.

Other report highlights include:

  1. Top-rated housing features that will allow respondents to stay in their homes as they age include full bath on the main level, bedroom on the main level, easily usable climate controls, and non-slip floor surfaces.
  2. Top-rated community characteristics include safe neighborhoods, a hospital, their doctor’s office, and a place to worship.
  3. Top-rated community services include door-to-door transportation and outdoor maintenance service.

How to Use

As Americans age, adults are increasingly concerned with staying in their current homes and communities. This study provides city planners and government officials with information on important home and community features and services needed for 45+ Americans to feel comfortable and confident aging in place. Additionally, it is not only important to ensure that these features and services are available but also that people know about them.   

View full report: These Four Walls... Americans 45+ Talk About Home and Community (PDF – 944 KB)