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If you or a loved one is in the situation of needing to remodel a home as to increase its handicap accessibility, we urge you to keep reading this article. Remodeling your home to make it more accessible does not need to be hard when you find the best local handicap accessibility remodeling contractors near you.
The needs of the remodel need to reflect the individual person that will be using the house every single day, and you therefore need to sit down and figure out exactly what those are. What sort of limitations are created for the person you are trying to help, be it you or another person. Talk with the person who will be the one benefiting and figure out what it is they need the most to make their every day life easier.
The better you understand the limitations and wishes of that person, the better you will also be able to approach a contractor, and have the project turn out a success.
Perhaps the thing that most elderly people start getting problems with is being able to handle the stairs in their home, or maybe they are now in a position where they actually need a wheelchair to make it easier to move around.
The project you have before you is not likely to be a small one since most homes are not built with the focus of being handicap accessible, meaning there are probably more than a few things you will need to address. As a result, this also means that it could end up being a project that is rather costly, so make sure that you lay a good budget and if you are not able to get all the things that you want to, then prioritize the things that are more important.
By working together with the right contractors, you will be able to figure out which of the different projects to prioritize and how to proceed from the point you are currently at. You should be aware of the different types of remodeling jobs you can do so that you end up making the best decisions in the end. Hopefully you will feel more informed after reading this article.
Common Types and Costs of Disability Remodeling
When your loved one has to use a wheelchair to get around, you will need to have a ramp installed to enable this, since it will be hard for a wheelchair to drive over surfaces that are uneven or with height changes of more than half an inch. It is not just a project you will need to do inside, but also outside. If you currently have stairs leading up to your home, it may be necessary to replace those stairs with the ramp, or simply add to them, depending on the current design. Although your loved one doesn’t necessarily use a wheelchair, a ramp can still make it easier to enter the home.
Instead of going with a ramp, another option is to have an AmeriGlide lift system installed. There are other manufacturers too in the market, and your contractor will be able to help you in the process. The purpose of this lift is to safely lift the wheelchair, where stairs otherwise make it difficult to move around. Not all houses necessarily have the space that is required to install a ramp, and a lift could therefore be a better solution to those that have less space to work with.
Another place where elderly and people with physical limitations often have issues is when it comes to the bathroom. If the home is equipped with a bathtub rather than simply a shower, it can make it easier for the residents to bathe if a walk-in bathtub is installed instead, as they don’t have those high edges that you need to step over.
As elderly people have a higher risk of falling over when bathing, it is crucial to either install handrails or make sure that the ones that are already in the house are very sturdy. If you do not wish to install a walk-in bathtub, you may also simply choose to install a walk-in shower that at least does not require anyone to take a large step up to enter.
For someone using a wheelchair, you need to make sure there is enough room to comfortably get around the house to avoid bumping in to walls and objects that could be in the way. Depending on the current layout of the home, this could include tearing down some walls, and making sure that the bedroom is on the main floor to keep it nice and easy to get to. Moving around should be as easy as possible.
Making these changes to the house can mean that you make it possible for your loved one to stay in their home longer than what would otherwise have been the case. Staying in the home that a person has been in for years can add a lot to the quality of their life. To have these things done to the home, you will probably end up spending somewhere between $4,000 and $5,000. Again, it depends on the extent of the project, and if you have a bigger house that needs to be changed, the cost naturally goes up. The easiest way to make sure that you don’t end up paying too much, once you’ve decided the amount of changes you want made, is to get quotes from different handicap remodeling contractors.
It is also a great way to show your loved one that you are trying to work with them to best let them live the life that they want to be living. If you think it is a lot of money, ask the contractor what options there are for possibly using a payment plan to finance it, or you may see if there are grants that you qualify for.
Remodeling a Bathroom and Making it Handicap Accessible
The bathroom is often the place that requires the most attention when you have decided to make these changes, as it poses some obvious challenges and risks. Making your bathroom not only safer but also more accessible can help lower the risk of a bad accident happening, and will thereby also be a significant factor in raising the quality of life.
If you imagine needing to use the bathroom with walkers or a wheelchair, you can clearly imagine the difficulty, as it requires good mobility to bathe. A lot of these changes will even make it easier for not just seniors, but kids as well, if they need to shower. There are different factors that will determine how easy to use a bathroom is.
Tub and shower
For a tub to be easy to access, it should not be difficult to step over. That is why you can see that it is more convenient with a walk-in bathtub, that has a door that can be opened. Once inside, you close the door that becomes vacuum-sealed. There is a seat, where you can sit down, and you can even fill the bathtub despite there being a door. It also means that the door should be easy to operate, and the edge will have only a minimal curb, if any, to make it accessible to wheelchair users too.
Sinks and faucets
If the sink is going to be used by someone in a wheelchair, it needs to be open underneath to allow the person to roll right up to the edge. If you are using a walker, a taller sink will give the person the option to roll the stroller underneath the sink and get right up to the edge.
It is important to note that the faucet should be easy to operate for someone who might not have too much strength in their hands, and grip strength should not be tested during the process.
Squatting on a toilet is not an easy motion, and the more accessible ones therefore tend to be closer to 19 inches over the floor, when you measure between the seat rim and the floor. In comparison, a standard toilet is generally 15 inches tall, and those additional 4 inches will make a surprising difference. A toilet that is less than 17 inches tall is not considered compliant with the handicap accessibility codes.
For someone who is using a wheel chair, you will need to install grab bars to make it easier to move from one to the other, and then moving back when you’re done.
Entry and turning in a wheel chair
You will want to be able to enter comfortably, and if you are using a wheelchair that means that the doorway needs to be wide enough, and you may have to expand the doorway as a consequence so it is 36 inches wide. If you are not in fact the one using the wheelchair, try borrowing it and navigating your way into the bathroom and you will see how difficult it can be.
When the person is in the bathroom using the toilet, it still needs to have enough space to also be able to fit the wheelchair which in itself takes up quite a bit of space. For a wheelchair to turn comfortably, you may need up to 5 feet of space, and this could not only pose issues in the bathroom but in the walkways too.
There are indeed lots of things involved in a handicap accessibility-remodeling project. By hiring the right remodeling company for the job, making your home to become disable-friendly should be easy, and using our service to get quotes from up to 4 different contractors will help you make sure you’re not paying too much.
Getting Free Estimates and Quotes For Your Needs
The easiest way to get free estimates and quotes for your accessibility remodeling needs is by taking two minutes to fill out the form at the top of this page, and we’ll help connect you with the most relevant contractors in your area.