Whether you are renovating an existing home or building a new one, it is essential to consider the needs of people with disabilities. ADA-focused modifications can make your home more accessible for your loved ones and help keep them safe. In this guide, we’ll cover home modifications for people with disabilities that are both cost-effective and ADA-compliant.
• Wider Doors
Many people with disabilities require home modifications to ensure that they can remain living in their homes. Some of the most common are widening doorways and hallways, reducing the risk of falls on stairs, installing ramps to increase exterior accessibility, and improving lighting.
Wider doorways are often available at most home improvement stores, but homeowners should consider custom-made doors if they have particularly narrow or difficult-to-move passageways in their homes. This may be the case if your house is built with stick or timber frames, which can have wall heights that aren’t standard.
One of the most common home modifications for people with disabilities is the installation of a stairlift. These devices help seniors and those with mobility issues get up and down the stairs without getting hurt or having to rely on other family members.
Stairlifts prevent injuries by preventing slips and falls that can lead to broken bones, head injury, or even death. They also restore independence by enabling individuals to go where they want, when they want, in their homes.
Stair lifts come in a variety of styles and can be installed on straight or curved staircases. There are also mobile stairlifts that can be moved around the house to access different staircases and landings.
• Grab Bars
As a home modification for people with disabilities, grab bars help reduce the risk of falls and injuries. They can be installed in bathrooms near the toilet or shower to support users when they sit and rise from a toilet seat, or when getting into or out of a shower.
ADA-compliant grab bars are a safe and simple way to provide additional support for aging and disabled people in their homes. They also make life easier for caregivers who care for their aging or disabled loved ones.
They can be installed in a variety of configurations to suit your needs, including horizontally adjustable or vertically adjustable styles. They can also be fixed or suction-cup-attached.
• Roll-In Showers
Roll-in showers are a great home modification for people with disabilities because they allow a person to easily roll in and out of the shower. This allows them to shower without getting their wheelchair wet, which can be a dangerous situation for many people in wheelchairs. They also have many other features that make them easier to use, such as bench seating and soap dishes. They can even be built at a lower height than standard showers for easy access while sitting down.
• Modify Bathrooms
Often, people with disabilities have trouble using certain features in their bathroom due to height or space limitations. Modifying bathrooms to be wheelchair-friendly is an important way to ensure that they can use them as they like. You can also install a ramp in your bathtub and shower to make it easier for wheelchairs to pass through the entrance. This is especially helpful if your family member has a medical condition that prevents them from climbing stairs.
• Lower Cabinets
Having the right kind of cabinet hardware also makes a big difference. For example, instead of a traditional round doorknob, install a lever that’s as easy to open as it is to use. Other useful things to consider are pull down shelves, drawer dividers and magnetic locking mechanisms. This last one is particularly important for people who have limited mobility and can’t twist, pinch, or otherwise manipulate a traditional doorknob. The American Disabilities Act (ADA) has specific guidelines regarding this and other important things to think about when planning a bathroom or kitchen remodel.
• Removing Clutter
Clutter in a home can create a number of issues for people with disabilities. It can impede their ability to move freely, cause tripping hazards, and prevent them from seeing the things they need in their homes. As such, removing clutter is a great free way to make a home more accessible for those with disabilities.
• Installing Assistive Technology
Assistive technology is a broad category that includes everything from low-tech equipment to high-tech solutions. These products can be a major investment, but they also help you improve your quality of life and keep you living in your home for as long as possible. A person with a disability will likely need some kind of assistive technology to stay safe and independent. These items can include mobility aids like wheelchairs, walkers, and prosthetic limbs, as well as communication devices like speech recognition software.