Constructing A Home With A Handicapped Person In Mind
If you had purchased land and plan on having a new home constructed on this new property, you will most likely have meetings with contractors to give them specifics on the way you would like your home constructed. If you have a handicapped person who uses a wheelchair in your family, the construction of your home will need to accommodate their disability in an attempt to make it easy for them to be mobile in and around the structure. Here are some tips you can use to make sure the home you have built will be safe and comfortable for your handicapped family member.
The Home's Design
When selecting a home design, consider a one-story building so your family member is not restricted from the use of certain areas of the home. Make sure ramps can be placed at all entryways. Have the contractors make wide walkways outdoors. This will allow your family member to enjoy wheeling themselves around without worrying about maneuvering wheels along a narrow path, possibly causing tipping as a result. Use laminate or hardwood flooring throughout the home so your relative can move from room to room without restrictive carpeting slowing them down.
When constructing the family member's bedroom, have shelving placed at a low level so they can be utilized without fear of injury. Light switches can be placed within arm's reach of the family member so they do not need to rely on others to turn on electricity for them. Even the windows can be placed lower on the walls than they are in standard rooms. Add railings along the walls so your relative can use them to push themselves from one area to another if needed. Your relative will appreciate having a living area where they are able to use their belongings without restriction.
One area needing special attention for a handicapped person, is the bathroom. Since it is easy to slip due to excessive moisture in this room, rails should be placed on every wall as the handicapped person will need to use them to get in and out of their wheelchair when using the facilities. Place a handicapped-accessible bathtub in the bathroom so your relative can open a wide-hinged door to get inside rather than worry about lifting their legs or having someone pick them up to get inside.
Have the sink installed at a lower level so your relative can reach it easily. Instruct your contractors place the piping near the back of the sink instead of underneath to your relative's knees do not scrape against them when they need to wash their hands.