Stroke survivors can benefit immensely from the assistance of a caregiver. The National Library of Medicine states that nearly 4.8 million stroke survivors are living with an ongoing disability, half of whom can’t perform daily activities without assistance. Stroke Recovery Foundation is interested to bring this aspect of recovery to its community.
The Importance of a Caregiver
A caregiver is an individual who provides emotional and physical support to a person while rarely being paid to do so. Unlike a professional caretaker, a caregiver is most likely not trained on specific day-to-day functions but learns as they go until they get accustomed to the needs of a particular person. They’re likely close to this person, in most cases being a partner, friend, or family member.
The primary role of a caregiver is to act as a helpful extension to the patient and assist them in times of need. They’re expected to become a method of transportation, while prioritizing housekeeping, preparing meals, monitoring the facilitation of medicine, and much more.
Purpose of a Caregiver Suite
A caregiver’s suite is often a spare bedroom, transformed basement/garage, or even an addition to a property to create a place of privacy and comfort. A caregiver’s suite doesn’t have to be extraordinary live-in quarters for them to occupy during downtime, but more of a place to store personal belongings and relax calmly while providing some distance if necessary.
When it comes to finding the right caregiver, convenience is a key element. Whether the patient has to go to the bathroom during the night or needs breakfast in the morning, the caregiver is relied on at all times when they are there. Keep in mind, it’s not practical for a caregiver to live under a different roof than the person they’re caring for unless they are providing caregiver services for a few hours per day or are on-duty during certain day or night hours. Giving them a separate but personal place, allows them to feel comfortable as if they were in their own home.
Additionally, sharing caregiver tips on maintaining health and wellness is crucial in assuring top-notch care at all times. Establishing a separate room for themselves will allow the caregiver to tend to personal or business matters, unwind, and plan out their days.
Caregiver Suite Must-Haves
Most caregivers are appreciative of anything in their space, but there are certain elements that every family should consider for the caregiver in order to provide full daytime or around-the-clock care.
- Bed – A place for the caregiver to rest at times, sleep during the night, and a place that can provide a sense of security.
- Desk – When personal or business needs arise, a desk is a perfect place to sit down and focus on a variety of tasks, while still being aware of their purpose.
- Bedside Table – A place to put personal belongings such as electronics, books, or whatever devices are needed throughout the day.
- Clothing Dresser – A place for your caretaker to store some extra clothes and apparel if needed, this shows them that you care for them as much as they care for you.
- If feasible, there own powder room or bathroom.
Cost of a Caregiver Suite
There’s no specific way to create the most perfect caregiver’s suite. As mentioned previously, it’s important to weigh your options while keeping in mind the situation at hand. It can be a spare bedroom, a transformed basement, or a loft. Additionally, one might consider adding an extension to your home. To do so successfully, it’s important to highlight the projected costs.
One thing to consider is how costly a home addition can be in order to create a comfortable space. Given that, the cost per square foot ideally ranges from $80 – $200, and there are other variables to consider such as materials, labor, and product shortages that may create difficulty. Consider whether doing a DIY project is best or hiring a professional contractor to help. DIY is cheaper but hiring a contractor can make for a more confident and secure project. You also have to remember to get a building permit if an extension is being considered, which probably will require architectural drawings.
If your savings or current funds aren’t feasible for this project, there are a couple of ways to gather the necessary funding. For example, a tax deductible home equity loan is a great way to be able to pull equity that you’ve built up over time from your home. You can receive capital in a lump sum while having lower interest rates than a personal loan or credit card. Secured and unsecured loans are also great ways to get access to funding, backed by items of value you already own or if your finances align correctly with requirements. These methods of funding aren’t the only options at your disposal but are reliable for these kinds of renovations.
On the other hand, utilizing a spare bedroom, if there is one, would certainly be the cheapest option. If any changes were to be made, they most likely would be cosmetic such as wall paint, blinds, and furniture upgrades! The most costly expenses that come to mind during repurposing a bedroom can be flooring, windows, rewiring electricity, and heating or air-conditioning. Overall, you can expect to save hundreds if not thousands of dollars by repurposing a spare bedroom or office into a caregiver’s suite.
Caregivers Just Want to Help
Regardless of being able to provide a suite for a caregiver or not, the caregiver’s goal is to provide comfort and help their patients regain confidence during their recovery. That said, having an appreciative and happy caregiver is certainly going to make everyone happiest.
To that end, a caregiver suite can be worth it. Out of appreciation and understanding that they’re human too, it’s important to create a space where both people can flourish.
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