I was recently reading an account written by Wharton-educated Economist, Paul Zane Pilzner, about an acquaintance he'd made with a successful young man in the stairlift industry. In fact, this young man has one of the nation's leading stair lift companies.
When I read the article, I was surprised to see a 20-something involved in an industry that I normally don't think of as "cool."
As it turned out, this young man joined the stair lift industry not because of any inherent social trendiness, but because he saw an economic trend that he thought would be beneficial to the industry. Namely, he saw a rash of aging baby boomers who would want to stay in their own homes as long as possible, even if they became physically disabled as they aged.
That's just the type of problem stairlifts are designed to solve. They are an inexpensive alternative to an in-home elevator that can lift people, seated in a chair, along a track attached to the side of their staircases.
It's a brilliant idea and well-timed.
Other alternatives to moving into a nursing home when you become unable to handle stairs are: buying a 1-level house or condo, buying a home with the "master on the main" so you're not frequently going up and down stairs, and remodeling your home to include an elevator, ramps, or exterior access to rooms that would otherwise be unavailable to you.
When compared with these choices, installing a stair lift can be an easy and affordable alternative.