The disability community is the only minority group that anyone can join at any time. Because you never know when you might need it, home accessibility is crucial.
Whether you or someone you know uses a wheelchair or another mobility aid, your Augusta home should accommodate those needs. Fortunately, you can make a few changes to help.
Below, our mobility wheelchair experts provided eight tips to improve the accessibility of your home.
Clean Up the Front Walk
First, you should make sure you have an accessible, clear path to the front door of your Augusta home. Make sure the path is flat and wide for a wheelchair and for anyone else who needs accessibility.
If the front path isn’t level with the door, add a ramp for wheelchairs and anyone who can’t use the steps. You can add the ramp to the side so that there’s enough space for a slow incline.
Keep the area right in front of the door clear of plants and other decorations. While they look nice, they can make it harder for people to maneuver on the patio right in front of your door.
Review the Front Door
Another important part of home accessibility is the front door itself. If the door is narrow, you should widen it enough for a wheelchair to fit. Widening the door also helps anyone who needs someone to help them walk or move around.
You should also lower the handle and lock so that you can use it when sitting in a wheelchair. That way, anyone who lives in the home can get in and out on their own.
Next, get rid of the step up into the home, if there is one. Consider raising the platform outside of the door or add a short ramp so that people can walk or roll up and down it.
Adjust the Layout to Your Augusta Kitchen
Another great way for how to make your Augusta home more accessible is to redo your kitchen. When designing it, make sure there’s plenty of space for someone in a wheelchair to turn around and grab necessary items.
Of course, the doorway should also be wide enough for a wheelchair. Other changes to make include adding more lower cabinets and using an electric stove instead of a gas stove.
You should make sure the sink isn’t too high and that there’s space for someone to open the cabinets or the oven. If you need more storage or counter space, consider using a mobile island.
Consider the Living Room
Next to the kitchen is usually the living room, which is another great place to utilize wheelchair accessibility tips. For one, set up your furniture so that it’s easy for a wheelchair user to move around.
Keep a clear path in and out of the living room for both wheelchair users and service dog users. You can also install rails along the wall to help anyone if they need to stand up.
When choosing furniture, look for chairs and couches that aren’t too low to the ground. The furniture should also be supportive to help people get in and out.
Upgrade the Bathroom
Augusta home accessibility tips also extend to the bathroom, and you can do a few things there as well. Of course, you should widen the door to fit a wheelchair. If you can, you may also want to make the bathroom itself wider to fit a wheelchair.
You can lower the bathroom sink to make it easier to reach when sitting. Consider installing an ADA-compliant toilet, which is taller than a regular one so that it’s easier to get on and off.
Smart home technology, like voice controls, can also help when it comes to lighting or controlling the water flow in a bath. If someone takes a bath, make sure the soap and shampoo are within reach.
Design a Practical and Stylish Bedroom
The bedroom is another room to consider when determining how to make your home wheelchair accessible. If you need to use a home hospital bed, you can make it more stylish with colorful sheets and a comforter.
You can add a side table by the bed so that you can put a lamp there. Include any necessities, like medications or other medical supplies for easy access. Of course, the supplies you use will depend on what you need and what Medicare covers.
Like in the bathroom, you can use smart home technology for things like the lights. Then, you don’t have to get up to turn the lights on and off, so you’ll only need your voice. You can also lower the rods in the closet to make accessing clothing easier.
Consider New Flooring with Local Augusta Supplies
When redoing your entire home, make sure you choose accessible flooring. That way, you can keep from slipping easily, and it will be easier to roll a wheelchair. Accessible flooring options include hardwood and ceramic tile, which can be found at a variety of home hardware stores around Augusta.
While carpeting may be soft, it can be hard to move a wheelchair around on it. Furthermore, if you use a slicker type of tile, it can be easy for someone to slip and fall.
At the very least, adjust the flooring in the common areas, bathroom, and the bedroom of whoever needs accessibility. Then, you can ensure everyone can get around.
Get New Door Handles
Another switch you can make for the entire house is to get new door handles. The handles that you have to grab and turn can be hard to use for people with arthritis or other hand issues.
Instead, use level handles. They don’t require as much of a grip, so you can easily push the lever down to open the door. Not only will that help with home accessibility, but it can also help anyone who has a big load to carry.
Getting new door handles can be a more affordable option than some other changes. They’re also easier to apply to the entire home instead of one room.
The Importance of Augusta Home Accessibility
Home accessibility is crucial for wheelchair users and anyone else with a disability. Consider a few ways you can make your Augusta home more accessible for yourself, your family, or your guests.
Then, you can feel better about being at home, and everyone can have more independence.
Do you need equipment to help with home accessibility? Contact us for an in-home assessment.