For a family member who is disabled, life in a home lacking accessibility features can be miserably challenging. For one thing, getting in and out of the house can be difficult. Worse, the chances of falling or tripping vastly increase when the proper aids are not in place. Therefore, you need to make sure your new home is handicap accessible if you are moving in with someone who is disabled.
Disability Can Make It Hard to Walk, Climb Or Grasp
Nearly one in five of people in the U.S. live with some sort of disability—accounting for as many as 57 million Americans or 19 percent of the population. Of these, around 31 million people experience difficulty walking or climbing up the stairs. Meanwhile, as many as nearly 20 million people experience difficulty with grasping or lifting objects. For these people, living in a conventional home proves frustrating if not outright dangerous.
Luckily, it is fairly easy to buy a new home already made handicap accessible. This way, you don't have to spend extra money modifying the house just to add accessibility features nor do you have to wait to move in. A handicap-accessible home is ready to inhabit immediately after your purchase.
Look for the following features to ensure you are buying a handicap-accessible piece of real estate.
Look for entrances featuring a ramp or gently sloping path to make access to the front door much easier for a disabled person, especially in the case of wheelchair-bound inhabitants or guests. At the same time, look for handrails installed along the entrance for easier access if the person with a disability is ambulatory. Motion-sensitive lighting outdoors negates the need for a wheelchair-bound person to reach high to turn on or off a light. This makes entry to the house safer even if they are alone—a feature worth putting on your needs list in a new home.
Ideally, there should be at least 32 inches of clearance through entry ways around the house, especially if a family member is using a wheelchair. At the same time, it's best if the hallways are 42 inches wide.
In the kitchen, be sure a minimum of 60 radial inches is available for turning a wheelchair around and maneuverability in general. Also keep an eye out for accommodating kitchen cabinets, already lowered for easier access.
By scoping out homes with these features, you can spare a lot of grief for your disabled inhabitant and yourself. To make the search easier, ask your real estate agent at Nu Home Source Realty, LLC., to help you narrow down the choices to homes featuring these amenities. Moreover, bring the family member who is disabled along with you during your hunt for the proper house. What better way to decide than giving that person a test run through the house?