Housing adaptations

Adaptations are changes made to a person’s home that make it easier, more comfortable and safer to carry on living there. Adaptations can also help carers fully carry out their role.

Typically, there are 3 types of adaptations:

  • minor
  • medium
  • major

Minor housing adaptations

Minor adaptations can usually be provided quickly and free of charge to anyone, whether you own your own home or rent from a private landlord or housing association.

Small changes typically include:

  • grab rails (or grab bars) that can help you balance and reduce the risk of having a fall
  • half-steps that reduce the height of steps in and around the home
  • stair rails (or handrails or bannisters) that can help you climb the stairs

Medium and major adaptations

In the case of medium and major housing adaptations, an assessment will be required from an Occupational Therapist.

Medium-sized adaptations can include:

  • door widening to allow easier access, such as for wheelchairs
  • bathroom adaptations such as grab bars to help make getting into and out of the bath easier
  • stair lifts to help get up the stairs safely if you have significant walking difficulties
  • domestic lifts, which are also known as through-floor or platform lifts

Major housing adaptations typically include:

  • building an extension
  • converting a garage

The cost of housing adaptations

Housing adaptations are available to older people, disabled people and those receiving certain benefits. The cost of your housing adaptations will depend on your need and what financial help you are entitled to.

Disability Facilities Grant

A Disabled Facilities Grant can help you pay towards any medium or major adaptations.

Community wheelchair and equipment services

If you would feel safer and more confident at home with equipment such as walking frames or crutches, your GP can refer you to the community equipment and wheelchair service. You can also be referred to the service by an occupational therapist or another healthcare worker.

The community equipment and wheelchair service also provides:

  • clinical assessments for posture and mobility
  • wheelchairs
  • seating systems
  • repair and maintenance for loaned equipment

To find out more about the equipment that may be available for you or the person you care for, you can contact the service by:

Returning equipment

To find out how to return equipment you do not need anymore you can phone 0121 329 0900 or use our online form.

Return equipment

If you need more advice

You can also visit the Ask SARA website for detailed advice and information and to find products to help with your health, help in your home and help you complete your day to day activities.