Paint choices when remodeling for aging in place and visitability should provide comfort, low maintenance, safety and livability. Psychologically, paint can have a significant impact on anyone’s life, particularly if you are choosing to remain in your home for any length of time. Paint is an amazing instrument for making a house or apartment a home. It is one of the few things that we have the ability to change relatively easily and fairly reasonably. A well chosen paint can create a beautiful space where comfort and safety are the priority. Putting some well thought out choices into action can greatly improve your surroundings. Do you want to learn more? Check out how do you choose paint color psychologically.
Some of the considerations to evaluate when choosing your paint are the location of the paint, the color of the paint and the lighting of the painted areas. Consider the location when choosing the paint: is it going to be in a large room, a dark room, a room where there is very little natural light? What are the activities that will take place in the room? What are the abilities of the occupants in the room? As we age, our eyes become more sensitive to glare and we see more yellow. This is a natural process that happens and something that should be considered and planned for when choosing paint colors. You do not want to be stuck in a dark room all day with very little light or contrast. One of my clients just went through a color story consultation with me and they chose warm grays and blues after living with lime green/spring green walls for many years. They noticed on their own that they were seeing more yellow and they wanted to counter-act that and reflect more of a cooler, more comfortable and calm feeling to their home. They also chose a paint that was not glossy to reduce the glare from the wall surface. That was a good choice since flat paints tend to show wear and damage easily.
Consider your lighting when choosing a paint color as it relates to safety. Darker colors will absorb light and could create a safety hazard. Lighting requirements increase as we age so choose lighter colors to facilitate safety in areas like the kitchen and bathroom, stairways and hallways where travel and productivity will happen.
Consider the lighting in the space and how the paint will show up when your lights are on and the sun is not out or if the sun is out how will the room feel? Paints tend to pick up colors from the lighting. If there are incandescent lights in the room the yellow light could make a wall look really yellow or if there is a blue undertone to the paint, the wall may look green. Before settling on a color, evaluate the color in the daylight and at night. You may be surprised at what you see. On the flip side of that, there are numerous fluorescent lights available with different light levels, some more blue than yellow. A recent experience at a local assisted living facility brought this point home. The walls were painted what could only be termed mustard yellow and for energy saving purposes, fluorescent lighting was installed on the wall behind the patients’ beds. This lighting, though bright and utilitarian, turned everything a very dirty, nasty green-brown-yellow color that was reflected from the mustard yellow wall. Even the patients looked awful because of the lighting and the paint color. Now, add to that the fact that some of the patients’ eyes already saw more yellow tones and it was a recipe for depression.
Paint choices are a great way for you to add personality to your home and create a personal haven. With a few well-thought out choices, the home will provide comfort, safety and low maintenance not only now but as you actively live in your home for years to come. Remember that paint choices can have a considerable impact on anyone’s life, particularly if you are choosing to remain in your home for any length of time or if you want to make your home visitable by all ages and stages.