Our house in Tennessee was built in 2001. I'm not a Realtor, but my speculation is that a 19 year old house would not be considered an old house. To support my opinion, I found a reference online indicating the average home built in America is 37 years old.
Can we correlate the age of a house to a human, like we do with dog years? Lets try. The median age of the population in the U.S. is 38 years old. The average age of an American home is 37. That was easy, the average age of houses and humans in America is almost exactly the same. My assessment then, is that the age of our house is equivalent to that of a teenager.
For trivial satisfaction, here is a brief breakdown of the average home age by state: TN is 36, TX is 33, the oldest goes to New York with 63, and Nevada is the youngest with 26. Interestingly, the town in America with the youngest home age is Fulshear, TX being 7 years old.
But something doesn't add up. At 19 years of age, we are at our peak of health potential and virtually absent of the deteriorating effects of aging. But our house, at 19 years of age, is already in need of repairs due to aging. Just when I thought we had the human age vs house age comparison worked out. The math was perfect, it showed almost a one to one relationship. But upon further examination, our formula fell apart. So how do we rectify this disparity? The answer... we have to further define age.
There are two kinds of aging; biological and chronological. My house is confined to the laws of chronological aging with the predominant factor being that of TIME. The age of our house is 19 years old, period. This time factor is applied to everyone that owns a house. It is also the way we express how long someone has been alive. Simply stated, I have been alive for 63 years, therefore my chronological age is 63. But that does not tell the whole story.
We are a living biology and as such, we also have a biological age, also referred to as physiological age. It takes into consideration lifestyle factors and it's varied impact on our tissues. Biological age, therefore, better describes the condition of our body.
We have all seen individuals who seem to defy age. For example the 70 year old that does not look a day over 50. And conversely, sadly the 45 year old that has lost all their youthful attributes. So who is younger, the 70 or 45 year old? Fortunately, with living tissue, chronological and biological aging does not have to be in lock step.
Our biological aging is slowed down or sped up by our lifestyle choices and other actions we decide to take. Even if we do not continuously act in a healthy manner, fortunately our body will still do it's best to perform regenerative functions, 24/7. But there is a limit on how much our physiology can defy the deteriorating influence of biological and chronological aging.
Over time, my house will continue to degenerate until I actively take steps to provide some degree of restoration. With my house, I am only dealing with chronological aging. It seems there is an almost unlimited amount of restoration we can apply in order to maintain a home's youthful appearance. For example, the oldest house on record is the Knap of Howar in Scotland, dating back to 3600 BC.
There are some interesting takeaways from this human to house health continuum:
1. We can relatively assess the overall health of our house with simple observation.
2. We can also guesstimate the long term implications due to our neglect to repair areas needing attention. These abilities however, is not easy regarding our own physical health.
For example, at first glance, our house looks almost brand new. But upon closer inspection, even an untrained professional like myself can detect areas needing repair. None are major, just some TLC here and there. The areas in need of attention fall into different house repair categories, but are still able to be viewed by a lay person.
Our kitchen sink has a subtle drip. I may be able to fix this, but I'm definitely calling a plumber.
A mountain storm blew off a piece of flashing from our fascia and now I have to find a roofer.
Caulking around some of our windows have dried out and need some fresh silicon applied. I could probably do it, but a carpenter would do a way better job.
One of our wooden fence gate doors will not close easily. This is more of a concern for Selina since she gardens and does other yard stuff, so it needs to be dealt with. I've already repaired it once and I'm done messing with it. So again, we need a carpenter, but with a sub-specialty in fencing.
Some of our trees and large botanical growth needs to be trimmed. We will probably do it, but an arborist would be my first choice.
There are a few other annoyances, but like the ones listed above, none of these repairs are major. But if not attended to, they could over time, turn into a costly repair project. Do I hire the services of a roofer, carpenter, plumber, and an arborist, etc? Should I embark on a few "do it yourself" projects? No! For times like these, I wish I had a good handyman, or handy-woman. On that note, a shout out to Melissa P. She is truly a house whisperer.
My point is that most people can relatively assess what home repairs are needed and who to call. But that ability is very difficult when it comes to our physical health. Can you assess your overall health, interpret what those strange symptoms mean, and illicit the appropriate correction? I'm going to say no, because I see most doctors not being able to do that.
Most healthcare providers are excellent at providing a remedy to control the symptoms, but fail to look deeper at the underlying core process. Unfortunately, most of our society is okay with that superficial level of healthcare. The upside? It does keep the individual from going too deep into their healing process.
Most of these people will frequent Walgreen's, CVS, or a grocery store and rely on OTC products to dull joint pain, dry up their sinuses, suppress a rash, purge the colon, stop the heartburn, etc........ Bear in mind, core metabolic imbalances express themselves as symptoms. Symptoms that are often addressed with these OTC products.
Again, to draw a parallel to a house in need of repair. Hiring a professional plumber, roofer, carpenter, or arborist gets the job done right and mitigates ongoing degenerative decay.
I gave up on DIY repairs a long time ago.
And more people need to give up on OTC remedies.