How to Build an Accessible Home
Updated: Aug 17
A home is meant to be welcoming and accommodating to its residents and guests. You may need to build your own dream dwelling to suit any unique accessibility needs. Renovating an existing house is an option for creating an unrestricted living space with the right accommodations. Creating an accessible home is a daunting process that can be broken down into a few essential steps.
List Your Required Accessibility Features
The first step to building a house that meets your unique specifications is creating a checklist of features you require. When building your home, the accessibility features you've laid out should be the top priority and foundation of your plan. Other design elements should never impede essential features that you fundamentally need. Consider some of these accessibility options suggested by Stiltz that may benefit you or your future guests:
Bathroom made safe to use without assistance via grab bars, non-slip surfaces, and features of appropriate height
Kitchen with accessible appliances and plenty of space
Flooring that is safe and easy to navigate
Consider an Existing Property
Building a home from the ground up isn't the only way to acquire an accessible home. An existing house on the market may have some, if not all, of the features you're looking for. Some common modifications for disabilities that homeowners can implement include moving or lowering light switches, installing wider doors or adding ramps and stairlifts.
Tracking down the right house is a laborious task in itself, so it is important to keep house hunting tips in mind and become familiar with financial assistance options for mortgages and loans.
The best resource at your disposal for finding accessible homes is a good local realtor who knows about the properties in your area and understands their special features. Not all real estate agents have equal experience and expertise, so it’s important to ask specific questions about a home’s accessibility. In addition to their experience, you also want to find out what their fee is as well as the satisfaction of their previous clients.
Hire the Right Contractors
Whether you are building or renovating a home, the next step in the process is to locate the right professionals for the job. Remember that accessibility projects will likely add value to your home. Be sure to keep good records of all the features that are added.
Find a Reputable Moving Company
After building or finding your perfect, accessible home, the inevitable moving day soon follows. Moving can be physically and emotionally difficult, especially if you have grown attached to your previous home. The good news is that senior move managers exist to accommodate the specific needs of seniors or others needing extra assistance during the relocation process.
When it’s time to hire movers, be sure to read reviews and feedback from past customers. A reputable moving service can help with every step of the move and handle your belongings with respect and care.
Building an accessible home is a worthwhile undertaking for your long-term happiness and comfort. The process may become quite arduous, and some building tips, such as choosing the perfect flooring, can seem involved at times. However, thoughtful research, proper communication with the professionals involved, and hiring capable movers soon lead to a dream home you can enjoy for years to come.
Megan Cooper thinks there’s nothing more satisfying than a well-executed DIY project. For her, it all started a few years ago when she built a bookshelf out of reclaimed wood. She hasn’t looked back since. Today, she regularly tackles home decor DIY projects big and small. She created reallifehome.net to share all of the tips, advice, and resources that she has found most useful as she’s learned the ins and outs of DIY.