If you or someone in your household has a medical condition or disability which impacts on mobility, there are a range of options that could make your life at home easier and safer.
Adapting your current home
It may be that some advice or practical suggestions are all you need to help to manage in your current home. In other cases you may have to consider equipment or adaptations.
If you need advice and assistance, your first step is to contact an occupational therapist (OT) on OT direct on 0300 555 1386 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You will be able to speak with someone trained to give you specialist advice about the difficulties you are having. If there is a simple piece of equipment that could help you, they will give you details. There are some pieces of equipment that they may be able to supply for you or your family to fit yourselves.
If necessary an OT will visit you in your home, assess your needs and look at options to assist you, which may include an adaptation to your home.
Adaptations may include:
- improving wheelchair access into and movement around your home
- disabled access to showers
- stair lifts
- kitchen adaptations
- grab rails.
Small changes, such as grab rails, can be done quickly. If you need something like a stair lift or a walk in shower, the waiting time could be much longer. Equipment will always be considered before adaptations to the home, and minor adaptations before major ones.
If you are a housing association tenant and the OT recommends a permanent adaptation to your home, details of the work will be passed to your landlord.
If you live in owner-occupied or private rented housing and the OT recommends a permanent adaptation to your home, you may be eligible for an improvement grant from the council to help you meet the costs of the work and your OT will help you to apply for this grant.
If you live in a privately rented house, you will need to get your landlord's agreement before starting any works, Explain that it may be possible to get a grant to cover the cost. If your landlord does not agree you will probably not be able to get the adaptations done. Your landlord may even be able to evict you if you make alterations to the property without permission.
If it is not possible to adapt your home so that it is suitable for your needs, or to provide you with the care you require at home, you could consider:
- moving to a specially adapted property
- moving to sheltered housing for older people – where you can live independently, and have access to a 24 hour intercom and pull-cord system to provide support in an emergency
- moving to a care home – depending on your age and disability.
Finding an adapted property
If your current home is unsuitable for your needs and cannot be adapted, you can bid for adapted or ground floor accommodation through the council's Homebid website.
You should give as much detail as possible regarding your needs. An OT Report outlining the adaptions and type of accommodation you require will assist your application.
Where properties have been designed or adapted to meet the needs of those with disabilities, and/or are accessible to wheelchair users, are advertised, applicants, or a member of their household, requiring such accommodation will be given priority.
You can identify adapted properties on the website and in the newsletter by looking out for the symbol shown here on the left.
Applicants who do not need adaptations but do need accommodation that is on one level can also be given priority for accommodation that suits this need. Check the eligibility and priority details on each advert to see whether priority is given to those who need adaptations and/or ground floor accommodation. Most adapted property adverts give details of the specific adaptations in the text.
Please be aware that there is a high demand for adapted, ground floor and sheltered accommodation and it will take time to bid successfully for a suitable property.
For more information regarding the Housing Needs Register, please contact the Housing Team at Civic Offices, London Road, Basingstoke, RG21 4AH, by emailing email@example.com or phoning 01256 844844.