At AFA we believe in providing a holistic
approach to disabled adaptations. Rather than being viewed as just
another construction project, the primary purpose of a disabled
adaptation should be the rehabilitation and long-term needs of the
client. By working more closely with Case Managers, using colour,
light and gardening as therapy tools and combining this with green
technology, it is possible to create a healthy, sustainable and
cost effective environment.
AFA offers disabled clients:-
- A detailed analysis of requirements.
- A thorough and comprehensive search for suitable properties for
adaptation or suitable land for new-build accommodation.
- Accommodation Reports.
- Production of design options.
- Advice on and appointment of additional consultants.
- Specifications and Schedules of Work.
- Planning and Building Regulation approval.
- Invitations to tender and production of relevant contract documentation
- Periodic valuations and Project Co-ordination until final completion.
At AFA we understand how important your input
is therefore we believe you should be fully involved at every step
of the project, meaning all specific customer requirements can be
met to their full extent. Our clients range from the severely disabled
who need purpose-built accommodation to elderly people who simply
need a few adaptations made to their home to make their day-to-day
An increasing number of older people and people
with long-term disabilities would like, ideally, to stay in their
own homes but, because of their age, frailty or disability, need
help to enable them to live independently.
If you are physically disabled, and especially
if you are a wheelchair user, you may need to get equipment and
have permanent fixtures installed at home so that you can live there
Examples of equipment and adaptations include:
- Stair lifts
- Ceiling hoists
- Powered or manual height-adjustable beds
- Powered leg-lifters for people who have difficulty
lifting their legs into bed
- You may also need to have adaptation work done
in your home - for example, having doorways widened or a ramp
A wide range of gadgets and devices are available
that make everyday tasks easier for people with specific disabilities.
Some examples are: • Clamps and holders to keep jars stable so they
can be opened with one hand. • Talking kitchen scales for people
who are blind or visually impaired. • Alarm clocks that vibrate
under the pillow for deaf and hearing impaired people. • Kettle
tippers for people who have limited arm strength or restricted movement.
• Devices that remind people with memory loss or learning disabilities
to do a daily task, for example taking a pill.
There is no doubt that your home life and quality
of living can be improved with the right disabled adaptions and
AFA is able to provide for all of your needs both externally and
Everyone has the right to ask social services
for a community care assessment and will qualify for help if they
meet local eligibility criteria. The council assessor will consider
personal needs – whether they are simple or complex; whether they
are many or few; and whether they are essential to independence
and quality of life. Help may be provided by way of a service, e.g.
home help, or equipment that will make managing tasks at home easier.
You do not have to accept the service or equipment
offered by social services. Instead, you are entitled to ask for
a direct payment, i.e. a cash alternative, equivalent in value to
the service/equipment you would have received. This money must then
be used to organise relevant services or to buy appropriate equipment
independently. Social services, using government guidelines, make
a decision on an individual’s capabilities to organise his or her
own services when deciding on whether a direct payment is appropriate.
Usually, an occupational therapist will assess
what adaptations would best meet your needs. If they agree that
you need adaptations to your home, then you may be eligible for
a Disabled Facilities Grant to help towards the cost of adapting
your home to enable you to continue to live there. Local councils
have to give Disabled Facilities Grants to eligible applicants to
make houses suitable for disabled people. Depending on your financial
circumstances, you may be expected to pay some of the costs. Disabled
Facilities Grants are available to owners and tenants in both private
and social housing up to approximately £30,000.
To apply for a grant you need to contact the
housing or environmental health department of your local council
and ask them to send you an application form. You must apply for
the grant before you start any work as you won't normally get any
grant if you start work before the council approves the application.
The local council must notify you of the result of your application,
in writing, within six months of the date of application.
As with any building works, you will need to
apply separately for any required planning permission or building
regulations approval. It is important to ensure that the work gets
done properly. For major work, the council may ask you to employ
a qualified architect or surveyor to plan and oversee the work.
If you get a grant, you can use it towards the cost of their fees.
The grant is sometimes paid in instalments, and
sometimes in full on completion of the work. The council may pay
the contractor directly, or give you a cheque to pass on. They will
agree this with you at the outset.
Sometimes, local councils may provide assistance
such as low cost loans as well as grants to private homeowners and
others to help renovate, repair or adapt their home.
Disabled people do not have to pay VAT on the
cost of some building work involved in adaptations to their homes.
If you adapt your home so that you, or another
disabled person, can live there, you may be eligible for a one-band
reduction on your Council Tax. This is particularly useful if the
value of your property has increased in value as a result of the
adaptation work, but it applies even if this is not the case.
AFA provides specialist knowledge and advice
on disabled adaptations for Local Authorities, Housing Associations,
Personal Injury Solicitors and private individuals. Please call
or email us for confidential and professional advice.