Looking ahead to retirement, many people aspire to spend their ‘twilight years’ living in a bungalow, without the daily struggle of stairs.
The word ‘bungalow’ is an Indian one, meaning a house in the Bengali style – a detached single-storey dwelling usually with a wide veranda and typically built for the British living in India in the days of the Raj. Or you could believe the other version… that the builder ran out of bricks after the ground floor and said to himself: “Never mind, I’ll just bung a low roof on it!”
Of course, the big advantage of a bungalow is having no stairs. As we get older, the stairs can become a daily challenge, whether it’s due to age-related conditions affecting mobility or just because we have less energy and declining muscle strength. Whatever the reason, there’s an obvious appeal to not having to tackle the stairs three or four times a day.
But there are disadvantages to bungalows too. For a start, they’re expensive. Because all the accommodation is arranged on a single level, they occupy a larger ‘footprint’ than a multi-storey house. They also tend to be detached, which means the plot a bungalow sits on needs to be bigger. In other words, you need more land to put a bungalow on, and building land doesn’t come cheap.
Bungalows are also in short supply. House builders will always favour a design which brings them the maximum return on their investment and that invariably means building upwards. A multi-storey house offers more rooms on a smaller plot, which is a two-time winner for a developer; less outlay on the land and more return on investment per room.
So like anything that’s in short supply, bungalows command a price premium. You might struggle to find a bungalow for sale in your desired area, or one that suits your needs, and even if you do, you’ll be paying more per square foot of accommodation than you would in a conventional two or three-story home.
Moving to a bungalow is also likely to mean ‘downsizing’, particularly if your purchase budget is limited to what you can sell your current house for. And because you can’t get a quart into a pint pot, downsizing means shedding some – perhaps quite a lot – of your possessions. That could be a positive thing if you need a good clearout, but you could find yourself forced to let go of treasured items of furniture or family heirlooms. There might also be the issue of where family members, grandchildren or friends will sleep when they come to stay for a few days.
Then there’s the daunting prospect of moving house – a harrowing ordeal at any stage of life, let alone in old age. You have to find the right house, hope your offer is accepted, organise surveys, sell your own house, hope the buyers don’t back out, pray ‘the chain’ doesn’t break further down the line, deal with all the legal issues, pack up everything you own, organise the moving day, notify everyone you know or receive services from and maybe organise redecorating or building work.
Suddenly it all seems an awful lot of effort and expense just to have a home with no stairs to grow old in. So why not forget the whole thing and turn your current home into a bungalow instead? Not by knocking a storey or two off the top, but by installing an Acorn Stairlift.
You’ll still have the stairs, but you won’t need to struggle up and down them if you can glide smoothly up and down in safety and comfort whenever the fancy takes you. It really is the best of both worlds. You get to stay in the home you’ve worked hard for, loved and cherished, but with the ‘no stairs to worry about’ practicality of a bungalow.
Imagine buying a bungalow that offers everything your current home provides, and with none of the hassle and upheaval of actually moving house, then imagine doing all that at a fraction of the cost. That’s not daydreaming – that’s investing in an Acorn Stairlift.
Installing one of our award-winning stairlifts effectively turns your current home into a bungalow by removing the daily obstacle of stairs at a single stroke. Whatever type of staircase you have, straight or curved, Acorn has tailor-made solutions to meet virtually every situation and physical need.
Why not arrange your free no-obligation home survey to see how an Acorn Stairlift can ‘flatten’ your home? Our experienced surveyor will answer all your questions and provide a comprehensive quote with no hidden extras and valid for a year. Give us a call today on 0808 223 4871 and you could be living your bungalow dream in just a few days’ time.