Whether it’s old age causing limited mobility, or even a sudden disability that makes using things like stairs impossible, it can be difficult to be faced with the prospect of suddenly not being able to move freely around your own home when this was once something that came as second nature.
Many people will think that they immediately need to start looking at moving and finding something on one level or one that’s already adapted to be accessible.
However, there are many ways that you can alter your existing home to make it accessible, and in this post we’re going to cover some of the things you can add to your home quite easily to help make it as accessible as you need.
External Ramps or Level Entry
Installing external ramps outside your home are ideal for anyone who needs to use a wheelchair, and these can quite easily replace stairs, or even be built alongside them. Another alternative to this is to have the stairs removed and build a level access entryway.
Although these both seem like they’re going to be a lot of work, and be quite expensive, you’ll find that there are a lot of places, such as government funding options, and independent charities that will be able to help with the costs and even hiring of contractors to get this work done.
Wireless Door Entry System
Door entry systems have been around for many years already, and although they’re great at being able to find out who’s at the door before you let them in, with most of these systems, you still have to manually press a button, and often they’re attached quite high on the wall, so they’re not ideal.
Wireless door entry systems are perfect to install in a home that needs to be more accessible since everything can be carried out by voice, including locking and unlocking the door, allowing people to enter, and most of them even come with cameras installed so you can always see who’s outside before deciding if you want to let them enter or not.
In most homes today that are built over more than one level, you’ll generally find that the main bathroom and the bedrooms are on the top floors, so in cases where using stairs is either going to be dangerous or simply not possible, installing a stairlift is a great option, and something that can be installed quickly and without much disruption.
A wetroom is a great way of making a bathroom more accessible and safe to use for someone who has mobility issues or disabilities that would make using a traditional bath or even a walk-in shower unsafe or impossible.
While it’s certainly a bigger project compared to other accessibility renovations, a wetroom allows for much more freedom and flexibility, and is always installed with safety in mind, including non-slip flooring, and alarms if needed.
Lowered Kitchen Units
Again, this can be considered a slightly bigger project when it comes to making your home more accessible, but it’s significantly cheaper and less stressful than moving house.
Since kitchens aren’t always the most accessible, and are predominantly designed for able-bodied people, if you’re in a wheelchair, or simply find it difficult to reach the tops of the cupboards, then having the units lowered to a more comfortable level is something to consider.
Before going ahead with this project, you will need to seek the advice of a professional joiner so that they can tell you what’s possible to do safely, and give some tips for the layout to make it easier for you to use.
Although many people prefer carpet in their homes, especially in the main rooms such as bedrooms and living rooms, depending on the thickness of the carpet, they’re not the safest option if you need your home to be more accessible, and also won’t work great with a wheelchair.
Nowadays, there are lots of flooring options out there that, despite being hard floors, can provide the same level of comfort and warmth you get with a carpet. You’ll also find many of these are non-slip, which is perfect for an accessible home.
No matter what your reasons for looking to make your home more accessible and safe, we hope that the tips in this post will help you make a decision that works for you and your family.