Our design assessment is based on home modifications needed for entrance areas, steps, ramps, kitchens, laundries, bathrooms and living areas. In doing so, this information allows a designer/builder to better understand how a home can be modified for increased accessibility and mobility.
It is important to plan an accessible path of travel from the property entrances and garage/carport to the entry door.
Home modifications need to provide appropriate width and circulation of entry door and internal doors to cater for the maneuverability of persons with mobility aids such as walkers, crutches, wheelchairs and scooters.
Good design includes the use of ramps. A ramp provides better mobility for people in wheelchairs or people who use other mobility aids such as walking frames, crutches or canes.
Ensure that stairs and steps are designed and fixed properly. They are a major cause for slips, trips and falls within a house.
Bathrooms are another important element when undertaking home modifications. Providing a larger bathroom which will allow for easy conversion to an accessible bathroom is practical and may save a lot of money in the future. Internal dimensions for circulation within bathrooms are difficult to achieve for a person in a wheelchair after the fact. By accommodating ageing in place, the sizing of a bathroom can be configured to allow for the use of walking frames, wheelchairs or electrical scooters.
Under ergonomic design principle of home modifications, kitchens should be designed with the kitchen work triangle in mind, that is, ensure the three major work areas (sink, cooktop and refrigerator) are located within a comfortable few paces from one another.
Whilst a perfect accessible design should be a single level dwelling, many homes have two or even 3 storeys. A lift mechanism is therefore very important in home modification. Lifts allow appropriate vertical transportation between floors of a house or apartment. There are many different types of lifts that can be used in the home environment.
Given we spend a lot of time in our bedrooms, the provision of an accessible bedroom that has a functional design should be part of every home modification process. Suitable circulation areas around a bed are required for wheelchair maneuverability, clear of the robe area
Though difficult to achieve for existing dwellings, a garage should allow for suitable wheelchair circulation around the car for wheelchair embarkation and disembarkation as well as vertical clearances for roof hoists.
Smart Homes offer tools for people with disabilities to live more independently, allowing them increased functionality for better control. Smart devices include motion sensors for lighting, controlling temperature and doorbell video feed from a mobile phone, voice operated TV, telehealth, automated window blinds.