Budget Friendly Ways to Adapt Your Home to be More Accessible

When you broach the subject of making your home more accessible for seniors or loved ones with mobility limitations or disabilities, many worry that this can be a pricey task. Installing walk in showers, door ramps, stair lifts etc can come with hefty price tags but there are a number of budget-friendly, smaller changes, that you can make with little-to-no cost that can help adapt your home to cater for the people in your life to help them live more comfortably and have greater independence.

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Budget friendly ways to adapt your kitchen to be more accessible

  • Move items on to easily accessible shelves – Avoid the need for stretching to reach things on higher shelves or bending over to get things from lower shelves by moving things to easily reachable shelves.
  • Buy plastic kitchenware – Ceramic kitchenware can be heavy for the elderly and physically impaired and glass can pose the risk of breakage and injuring those, invest in plastic kitchenware which is more durable if dropped and much lighter.
  • Invest in accessible kitchen accessories – There are a number of items that you could purchase to make life easier for the elderly and physical disabled:
    • A kettle tipper to assist when pouring a cup of tea/coffee;
    • An assisted jar, tin and bottle opener;
    • A perching stool that’s height adjustable to provide support when preparing food;
    • Cutlery with oversized grips that can be more comfortable for people with limited motion and strength.
    • Chopping boards with spikes, raised edges or attached gadgets to help those with reduced strength or one-handed.

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Budget friendly ways to adapt your bathroom to be more accessible

  • Raise the toilet seat – Standard toilet seats can be too low for some but raising the toilet seat is an inexpensive way adapt your house that can make a big difference.
  • Install handrails - Installing grab bars to help get in and out of the bath, and up and down off the toilet seat, is not only safer for those who struggle to lift their body weight but it can also give them more independence.
  • Purchase some bathroom gadgets – Invest in long handled sponges to reach inaccessible areas without overstretching or foot cleaning bathmats to avoid bending over.
  • Purchase a shower seat – Rearranging your bath / shower can prove financially straining however purchasing a shower seat is a great way to make washing easier without breaking the bank.

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Budget friendly ways to adapt your bedroom to be more accessible

  • Adjust your bed height – For those who have difficulty getting in and out of bed it is recommended that having your bed between 20 to 23 inches off the floor is preferable (ADA, 2023).
  • Install bed rails or grab bars – In addition to adjusting your bed height add a grab bar and rails for assistance getting out of bed.
  • Minimise furniture – Allow ample room for navigating through your bedroom by removing any unnecessary items of furniture and décor. This is especially important for those who go to the bathroom during the night.
  • Purchase a lamp for your bedside – If the light switch isn’t close to the bed, add a lamp that will prove helpful when getting out of bed in the darkness.
  • Remove any bedding that touches the floor – Prevent the opportunity or your feet to get tangled in any excess bedding by removing any bed skirts and opting for duvets and linens which cover the bed but don’t trail excessively on the floor.
  • Talking clock – It’s difficult to gage what time it is when you wake up, so rather than always needing to look for your glasses etc, invest in a digital clock which announces the date and time verbally.

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Tips for making your whole house more accessible

  • Declutter your floor – As mentioned in the Reduce the risk for trip and slips by keeping all potential tripping hazards at bay.
  • Secure any loose carpets / rugs – To further reduce trip hazards make sure any carpets / rugs are safely secured along the edges.

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Care insurance from Towergate

For advice and assistance from our team of specialists, please visit our specialist web pages, call us on 01438 739280 or email newcare@towergate.co.uk.

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About the author

Carolyn Baker-Mellor - care insurance articles authorCarolyn Baker-Mellor is a respected industry leader with over 35 years' experience within the care insurance sector. She works across a wide spectrum of insurance product and policy development, delivery and optimisation for care industry clients, including managing global corporate accounts, working closely with trade associations, and helping clients in protecting their businesses and personal assets. Her areas of expertise within the sector include care homes, nurseries, domiciliary care, hospices and charities.

Carolyn currently works at Towergate as Head of Care Insurance. Towergate is the UK’s leading independent insurance broking platform and forms part of the Ardonagh Group, an international network of over 100 offices and 7,000 people which incorporates leading brands in both Lloyd’s of London and global markets.

She previously worked for 10 years at Aon as a director, client services leader and assistant director for claims.

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