Preparing Your Retirement Home for Family Vacations

Going for a smaller and more accessible retirement home in Nevada or Arizona is a great choice. You can convert your house into a holiday home for your extended family to save on hotel fees. There is something for everyone in Nevada and Arizona. You can visit the Grand Canyon, see the Monument Valley, enjoy the beauty of Lake Tahoe or marvel at the magnificent hoover dam.

All this sounds like good fun, but you have to make room for your grandchild as your family stays over. No worries, though. We have created this guide to show you how to convert your retirement home into a holiday home your family will love.

grand parents and grandchild playing on beach

Selecting the Baby’s Room

Choosing where your grandbaby will be spending most of his or her time is very important. Luckily, you have some options. You can go for the room closest to the guest bedroom where the parents will be staying. Better yet, you can make small changes and build additions to the guest room to accommodate the baby.

From experience, you will want to ensure your grandbaby is close to his/her parents in case they need anything. You can start by building space-saving shelves and storage units. If possible, opt for beds and furniture with in-built storage compartments where you can keep the baby’s stuff. Getting a sturdy mini-crib is also a great idea.

Go vertical if your home has high ceilings. Identify places up high where you can install small additions to free up space for a nursery where your grandbaby can play and rest. You can use the additions to store potentially dangerous items and keep the baby safe.

How to Convert the Room

Creating sufficient space in the guest bedroom to accommodate your family can be challenging – but we all love a challenge! The first thing you’ll want to do is move and store the bulky, breakable, or potentially dangerous items (you already know how curious kids can be).

The best storage solution for these items is self-storage units. Self-storage units are climate-controlled facilities where you can store all kinds of things for extended periods. Self-storage units do offer some notable benefits such as:

  • They Protect Your Valuables From Environmental Damage: When you are running low on storage space, you tend to fill everywhere you can with your belongings from attics to basements. You may even resort to storing in some shed or structure outside. Unfortunately, these cold and usually damp spaces mean that your stuff is at risk of environmental damage from the environment. The climate-controlled storage units help keep your things safe and pristine.
  • Added Security From Theft: If you have valuable possessions to worry about (such as heirlooms), storage units will keep them safe. They have several levels of security, from secure locks to CCTV to 24/7 security monitoring for your peace of mind
  • Help Create More Space:  If you are going to have your extended family over, then a storage unit can help you free up for them. You can rent a storage unit that matches your space needs.
  • Helps Save Costs: Adding some more storage space to your retirement home can be time-consuming and cost you many dollars. A storage unit is an excellent idea as you only use it when you need it. Instead of budgeting for a new installation, you can save that money for something else.
  • Self-storage units can also help you organize, save time, and reduce stress.

How to Baby-Proof the House

Millions of young children visit the emergency department every year for unintentional injuries. Remember when your son or daughter was still a baby? You did a bit of baby proofing yourself at the time. Therefore, you will want to ensure your retirement home is safe for your grandbaby as well. Going from room to room is the best way to simplify this process. Some of the ways to baby-proof your home include:

The Living Areas

  • Invest in extensive carpeting to cushion the baby from any fall blows. Ensure that you safeguard the sharp coffee table edges and corners.
  • You can use bumper guards for this purpose. Check the sturdiness of the furniture and especially the shelves. Kids love to latch onto furniture and overhead structures as they learn to walk.
  • Ensure that there is nothing potentially dangerous that your grandbaby can climb. Close off any fireplaces and make sure there are no dangling cords.
grand parents and grandchild playing on beach

The Nursery

  • Get a sturdy and durable mini-crib with fixed sides. Your next grandson or granddaughter could inherit it. Do not go for second-hand cribs.
  • Since you already know that constant monitoring is essential for the baby, you can use a smartphone for this purpose. You can use a spare smartphone lying around and a baby-monitoring app.
  • Some apps that can do this well include AtHome Camera, BabyCam, Dormi, and WiFi Baby Monitor. Just place the smartphone somewhere strategic around the crib, and you can view the stream from your computer or smartphone. Remove any pillows and excess bedding from the nursery. These can be hazardous to your grandbaby. Finally, install covers for all electrical outlets.

The Kitchen

  • You can recall how you always kept your children away from the kitchen. The kitchen is probably the most dangerous room for the baby. Install appliance, cabinet, and door locks. Avoid using chemical cleaning products and opt for the natural ones (vinegar). Always keep plastic bags and foils out of reach.
  • All your breakable cutlery and dishes should be kept high up where they cannot reach. Cover all exposed electrical outlets and remove any dangling cords. Often forgotten but potentially dangerous kitchen items are those little refrigerator magnets. They can be a choking hazard, so keep them away.

The Bathrooms

  • Always keep the toilet lid down. Alternatively, you can purchase a toilet lid lock. Keep all razors, medication, soaps, toothpaste, mouthwash, and cleaning chemicals out of reach. Invest in a non-slip bath mat and ensure that the bathroom floor is always dry.

Staircases

  • If the house has a staircase, it is a good idea to install a sturdy baby gate (DIY project). Keep the stairs well lit and consider getting some non-slip mats or carpeting.

The Outdoors

  • The areas around your retirement home can be potentially dangerous for babies. Ensure that you keep all gates and doors locked. Anchor down any wobbly outdoor furniture.
  • Inspect your compound for any tiny objects that can be choking hazards. A good trick is to use your vacuum cleaner for this. If you have a pool, keep it locked or covered when no one is using it.
multi generational family celebrating holiday with a back patio cookout

Making the Transition Once the Baby Has Grown Up

Once your grandchild has grown up and can learn safety precautions, you can transition back to normal life. An important step is ensuring that your grandchild understands and adheres to safety rules. You may uninstall some of the baby-proofing items such as the stair gates, socket covers, and cabinet locks.

You don’t have to uninstall everything, though. Some baby-proofing items can be beneficial for adults as well. For the extra stuff that you won’t need like the baby crib, you can keep them in storage, waiting to serve your next grandbaby. Check out some of our available units HERE. 

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About the Author: Rob Loveless