Featured photo: Glenda and Bob Kniss
Written by Tanya Terry
Glenda Kniss is a co-owner of the TruBlue Total House Care franchise, along with her husband Bob Kniss. Glenda Kniss expressed what TruBlue is striving to do is provide affordable, worry-free living for seniors and hassle-free living for young adults.
Glenda Kniss is in her 70s. She works for TruBlue full time and also works at Grand Blanc High School full time.
“We’ve had really good success,” Glenda Kniss said. “We bought this last February and really started doing things around the end of April.”
Some of the jobs done within the Kniss’ businesses have included work on bathrooms and decks and painting jobs. This work falls within a category called “handyman” within TruBlue. Glenda Kniss said, however, the work consists of being more than a handyman. The services include a handyman, maintenance, yard work, repairs and seasonal work.
“You name it we’ve done it,” she said.
According to Glenda Kniss, she and her husband are ready to go into the Aging in Place part of the program.
Kniss told the Courier, as part of her training through TruBlue, she learned to perform a senior home assessment.
Aging in place is more appropriate for seniors who have fallen or had strokes than the “handyman services, “according to Kniss. She points out after falling, many adults need to have their knees or hips replaced. They may also have head or back injuries. These injuries can have short-term or long-term effects on people.
According to a recent study from the British Journal of Sports Medicine, balance quickly diminishes after the mid-50s increasing the risk for falls and other adverse health outcomes. The study also recognized that the ability to complete a 10-second one-legged stance is related to a lower risk of all-cause mortality and consequently a longer life expectancy.
Some fall-proof tips include:
- Having handrails on both sets of the stairs and making sure they are tightly fastened
- Making sure there is good lighting, with light switches at the top and bottom of stairs and on each end of a long hall
- Mounting grab bars near toilets and on both the inside and outside of your tub and shower.
- Putting night lights and light switches close to your bed.
Glenda Kniss gave a more specific example of what they may do as part of the Aging in Place program.
“Let’s say a person was in the hospital. Then, they have to go into rehab. If they hire us to go into their home, before they come, we can go in and take up throw rugs. Maybe a ramp will be needed. We can build a ramp. We can change light fixtures. We can get the house ready so that when that person comes home, they don’t have to worry about their safety at all.”
Besides being for those who have been injured, aging in place can also be for those who are simply getting older.
Kniss believes most adults want to stay in their homes as long as they can. She is 72. Her husband, Bob Kniss, is 74.
“I want somebody to be there to help me when the day comes that I need assistance,” Glenda Kniss said. “That may be where my passion comes in.”
The Knisses partner with other companies. One is SimpliSafe home security company.
“The other one we have is 24/7 Live Remote Monitoring. We think that’s really going to catch on. You don’t have to put a hole in your wall. It’s all remote. You can have it in any room or in every room. It can tell you if a door has been left open. It can even tell you if the stove has been on too long or if you’ve been in the bathroom too long. With this, there are no cameras. If a person is lonely and just needs to talk to someone, they can call this 24/7 and they’ll be a live person there that can make them feel better.”
Glenda Kniss clarified they are not going into homes taking care of people, but they are making the homes so that individuals can live there worry-free.
She gave her advice to help other adults, including seniors, who would like to age in place gracefully.
“I think everybody needs to stay active. They always say if you don’t move, you’ll lose it. As you get older, you find that things like yoga and water aerobics are good for you. Anything in the water is better for an older person because you’re not putting that impact on your joints. I go to water aerobics and there are people a lot older than I am in it. A lot of the people are overweight. But they’re still trying to take care of themselves and be healthy. I think that’s what it all boils down to.”
Although TruBlue is a national company, the Kniss’ territory is mostly in Grand Blanc and Clarkston.