Moving around the home can be challenging for handicapped individuals. It’s important to ensure that everyone in your home can have the access they need. A significant portion of the country’s population experience physical limitations which means there’s a need to create homes that fit for all people.
If you’re looking to remodel your home so it can be more handicap accessible, your goal should be to create the access you and your loved one need while maintain your home’s appeal to the market, should you want to list it for sale later. Here are home improvement projects you can undertake to make your home more accessible.
Widen the Doorways
You may want to start by removing unnecessary doors around your home. Alternatively, you can use swing-away hinges on your bedroom and bathroom doors to create a wider opening. Handicapped individuals using a walker or wheelchair will have a hard time opening, shutting, and maneuvering around doors and this can cause extra strain on them. Your doorways should be at least 32 inches wide to allow for easy access using wheelchairs.
Optimize the Kitchen
To make your kitchen accessible by individuals on a wheelchair, ensure there’s a minimum five-foot diameter of floor space clearance for easy maneuvering. Switch to a single-lever faucet, move appliances and switches close to the edge of the kitchen counter, and lower your kitchen counters to 30-inches. These are just some of the updates you can make in your kitchen.
Improve the Flooring
Avoid overly plush carpeting as it can make it difficult for handicapped individuals to move and maneuver around your home. Make sure the carpet pile length is less than one-half-inch thick. Consider installing a slated wood tray or textured tile of your floor to prevent falls. Make sure you have a non-slip floor.
Update the Bathtub and Shower
Consider converting your bathroom space to a step-in shower. Handicapped individuals are likely to experience problems using bathtubs. If removing the bathtub isn’t an option, install grab bars to provide support. You can also install tub transfer seats that will allow them to take a bath without necessarily having to lower themselves to the tub.
Consider Furniture Placement
There should be a path of at least 32 inches between furniture items in your home. This will make it easier for wheelchair-bound individuals to move around. Use furniture coasters or wood blocks to raise furniture so they can sit comfortably.
It’s important that your home has sufficient lighting so that everyone, including the handicapped, can properly see where they’re going. Whether or not your home receives a lot of natural light, consider adding light along any area that may cause problems from a person with limited mobility. The light switches should be installed correctly on both ends of staircases and hallways.
Make sure you find a reputable contractor who has the knowledge, expertise, and experience in handicap accessible home construction services. Find an experienced team of construction experts that will make your life easer while improving your home’s accessibility.