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When Should I Add Accessibility Features to my Dad's House?

by Mike Dodd, Home Remodeling Expert
July 13, 2012

Question: My father does not suffer from any disability or illness but his house has many stairs. I was wondering if I should suggest adding accessibility features in his house, even though he does not need it right now.

Answer: It's always a good idea to think and behave proactively with respect to a loved one's physical condition as it relates to their ability to function in their home. Given that the house has a lot of steps, and assuming that it is necessary for him to be able to access the upper levels of the home, it would be a good idea to investigate the various vertical transportation systems that are available on the market. There is a wide variety of types with the most common being a stair lift system that conforms to the geometry of the existing stairs. These are among the most economical and can install in a single day's time, and most vendors keep inventory on hand to the extent that there wouldn't be a waiting period in order to obtain the product. Determining which type is best suited to his stature and needs makes sense before the time that he may require that kind of assistance. Pro-active verses re-active is always a good thing, especially as it relates to one's physical health and well being.

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Mike Dodd is the founder and President of Lifewise Renovations, that combines home remodeling project management with the expertise of health care professionals, to make it possible live safely and comfortably at home regardless of age or physical ability. As a member of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), Mike holds the Certified Aging In Place Specialist (CAPS) designation.

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