From special gatherings to heart-to-heart chats, common areas are the social hub of your community and can make a big impact on prospective residents and their families. Jadi Endl, Senior Product Consultant at Direct Supply, knows the ins and outs of senior-friendly furniture and answered some of the top common area furniture questions to help you choose the right furnishings.

What kind of sofa should I buy for a resident who has trouble moving around?

For residents with limited mobility, keep an eye on the seat depth. Shallow seat depth fosters easiest egress and is best for residents with mobility limitations. All of our collections also feature durable high-resiliency foam cushions, which offer extra firmness to help residents get up from the sofa.

How can I help my staff keep our common spaces clean?

It’s all about the seat decking. With drop-through seat decking, the seat removes completely to reveal the floor below, while removable seat decking features user-friendly gas spring hinges that lift and fold back seat decks. Both offer easy cleaning to support a long lifespan for the furniture. All of our collections come standard with moisture-barrier seat decking, which resists moisture and spills. We also offer a wide selection of on-trend fabrics designed to resist stains and clean up easily.

There are so many options. Where should I start?

Try our quiz for help narrowing down your options! Another way to get started is by choosing your style.  Does your community prefer classic design elements, like rolled armrests and wingback styles? Then start with traditional furniture. If bold, modern lines and reinvented retro are more your style, look at contemporary design. And if your community is somewhere in between, try browsing transitional furniture.

I’m refreshing a common area space for Independent Living. Do I really need contract-grade furniture or can I purchase furnishings locally?

Locally purchased furniture typically features residential warranties, which can be voided when used within a commercial setting. That’s why Direct Supply offers a comprehensive line card with furnishings backed by commercial-grade warranties. Senior Living-specific furnishings feature contract-grade construction designed to stand up to the daily wear and tear in your community. 

What is the best way to arrange furniture?

Consider how residents will move throughout the space, especially those who use walkers or wheelchairs. Make sure to keep pathways clear and use stable, arm-height furniture that can be grasped by those walking for added balance. Adding a variety of furniture in open common areas lets residents choose which seating is most comfortable to them. Also, be sure to provide seating options for a spectrum of mobility levels.

Do you have a question for Jadi about common area furnishings? Comment below! Or contact us today to start refreshing your common areas.

Are you an interior designer? Check out senior-centric design tips.