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Home modifications for the disabled

Everyone deserves to feel safe and comfortable at home. Home modifications are changes made to help a person be able to access and move around at home. Home modifications can be large scale alterations or simple changes.

Here, we outline the modifications available and how to apply for NDIS home modification funding.

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    What can be a home modification?

    Home modifications are changes made to your home, to help you access and use the space. Home modifications for people with a disability are changes made as a result of the requirements of your disability or health needs.

    NDIS funded home modifications

    NDIS participants can access a home modification program through their NDIS plan. Home modifications are included in the Capital – Home Modifications budget. Modifications must be made in line with what is stated in the plan and cannot be varied.

    To have home modifications added to your NDIS plan, discuss your requirements with your support coordinator. Ensure you have the available budget in your plan because allocated funding will be reviewed periodically.

    You will need to meet the eligibility criteria for home modification services. The first thing to determine is if the home modification relates to your disability.

    Questions to consider

    Other questions to consider ahead of requesting home modifications from the NDIS ask may include:

    • Will the home modifications assist you to achieve your goals?

    • Will the modification improve accessibility and enable you to better manage activities of daily living?

    • Is the modification reasonable and necessary?

    • Will it easier for you to participate in work or community life?

    • Does the proposed modification offer good value for money?

    • Is someone else, such as a landlord or some other government funding scheme, responsible for the modification?

    To access funding for your home modifications, you will need to provide evidence of how the modification will support your use of the living environment.

    The more complex the modification, the more evidence you need to provide. You need to arrange an occupational therapist assessment with an accredited home modification assessor.

    When are home modifications required?

    You may need to make modifications to your home if you:

    • have a functional impairment that limits your use of the bathroom or toilet

    • can’t move about freely because the doorways or halls are too narrow

    • can’t access all the spaces and rooms of the house

    • require something to be installed differently so that your carers can provide services

    • have had a disability-specific hospital admission and need to go be able to return home safely and avoid potential readmission

    • are aware of risks to your health or safety posed by the design or features of the house

    • have a referral from a health professional, like occupational therapist

    Minor home modifications

    NDIS funding for modifications are considered either minor or complex. Minor home modifications are any changes that are:

    • non-structural, simple and straightforward, not altering the supporting structure of the home

    • present a low risk of problems

    • affect only one or two areas

    • cost less than $20,000 in total

    Category A minor modifications cost under $10,000 and Category B cost between $10,000 and $20,000.

    What are minor home modifications?

    Examples of minor modifications include:

    • installation of handrails

    • widening of doorways

    • relocation of light switches or power points

    • installation of basic ramps

    • installation of blinds or soundproofing

    • installation of grab rails, drop down rails and toilet rails

    • installation of smart technologies, alarms and monitoring systems

    Complex home modifications

    More complex and major home modifications usually relate to structural changes to a home. They have higher costs and greater risks.

    Complex home modifications often also involve extensive electrical or plumbing work. These types of projects may include:

    • ramps that need approval to be installed

    • removing walls

    • projects that require input from an architect or engineer

    • projects that take several weeks to complete

    • projects that need to be completed while you are not staying at the house

    Examples of complex home modifications with the above criteria include:

    • lowering or raising of benches or sinks

    • installation of hoists and lifts

    Bathroom modifications

    Bathrooms are one area of the home that commonly require modification for people with a disability. Showers can be adapted from wall mounted to hand held to make it easier to control and direct water flow, especially if you shower seated.

    With all that water around, grabs rails in the bathroom also make a big difference by reducing the risk of falls. Holding on to a grab rail while transferring in or out of a shower or bath provides stability.

    Adding new and brighter lighting is another modification that can make the bathroom safer. Better lighting can make it easier to see any hazards or puddles on the floor.

    Non-slip flooring is another essential modification to make the space more easily accessible. Wheelchair accessible bathroom modifications often also include doorway widening.

    Home modifications for toilets

    Adding a grab rail to the toilet is a simple and easy modification that can make a lot of difference. Holding onto a grab rail when lowering or standing from the toilet enables a person to feel balanced and safe.

    Nursed Care for home modification services

    At Nursed Care, we have mastered disabled renovations and modification services, and can ensure your space is accessible and looks great.

    Contact us to discuss your ideas so that we can conduct and assessment and help you plan for permanent home modifications so you can live independently and comfortably in your own home.

    We assist people with home maintenance services when you need support with tasks such as changing light globes or smoke alarm batteries, or replacing the lock on the front door. We also provide these services to older people through My Aged Care.

    If you want to make some changes at home- contact us today!

    Related Questions

    The NDIS have created criteria around what they will and will not fund. Some items that are generally not funded include:

    • cosmetic or decorative finishes

    • home modifications based on preference

    • swimming pools

    • the addition of another floor

    • repairs that a homeowner or landlord are responsible for

    • temporary solutions that don’t address the problem

    • other ineligible program home modifications

    Need qualified care?

    At Nursed, we offer a full range of care and disability support services, assisting you to live the life you want to live. Contact us today.

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