First of all, this apartment is on the ground floor. Some seniors like the second floor because they think it is safer from break-ins. I haven't had any fear about that. After all, I have the guard dog, Buddy, that can hear a leaf drop. Like me, however, he might not always have good hearing so those window clips are in place.
I love walking straight out the door and not down two flights. The last house I owned was a rancher and I think if I bought another house, which I will not, it would be one level.
Handrails in the bathroom. I really do miss having them. I only used them for their intended purpose once and that was the time my knees just would not lift me out of the bathtub so I used the slanted handrail to wrench myself up hand over hand. I think they are worth the money, or if you are of the opinion, the unsightliness.
I love my patio which is larger than my balcony at the old place. No more moving plants in and out. I'm going to have my son staple heavy plastic around the frame when it gets cold - which is only three days in Texas. I do miss having a yard though. I think yard work was my only physical workout. After the kids were out of the house I would change into my garden clothes when I got home from work and dig and rake and plan to my heart's content. I've always been attracted to nature whether walking or photographing. The weather is just right for both now. So I think I would lean toward having a yard with the hope that I could just hire a lawn boy when the time came.
Speaking of walking, Buddy and I do quite a bit of walking around the complex. We have our little trails we follow and he trots ahead of me with the pleasure of a plantation owner. But we try different routes also. He is starting to get used to having different people than the seniors at our old place. Like his owner, he is not big on new people. It is interesting to see him when he thinks he knows somebody. Ears down and tail-a-wagging he goes running to meet them.
Parking is fairly decent. There are three parking spaces very near my apartment and that is so nice to bring in the groceries. Beats the heavy bags and two flights of stairs.
Only the bedroom is carpeted here. The vinyl flooring is nice but I forgot how much Buddy sheds. I am kind of grossed-out thinking how much dog hair must have been in my old carpeted apartment. I have a few rubber-backed throw rugs by the doors now but the larger room rugs I purchased are too slippery - and yes I did forget to get the non-slip backing. So rugs are on hold for now. If the floors get too cold this winter I may reconsider.
My kitchen cabinets are too high, as most are for me. What is the answer to that? Not too high but not too low so I have to bender over and dig in the back. Luckily I do not cook a lot so do not have much that I have to stand on the stool to reach.
Since I fell again the other day while standing on the couch and nailing pictures up, I have come to accept that my days standing on ladders and couches are over. I feel sure that kitchens will be redesigned for seniors in the coming years.
So no to stairs, yes to lawn. Yes to bathroom handrails, no to slippery rugs. Door knobs, not sure yet. I've always had a lot of lamps but now they are all on. All things I never took into consideration before.
More later ...