Disabled Adaptations

 

If you or someone living in your property is disabled you may qualify for a Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG). The DFG Scheme is run by District Councils. It aims to assist with providing adaptations and facilities to enable a disabled person to continue to live safely and conveniently in their home.

For advice and practical help on improvements you should approach your local Social Services Department, your local District Council or your Home Improvement Agency; – for example HomeAid, Care and Repair, Staying Put or Anchor. You may submit enquiries to your local council.

Applications for grant assistance will generally be dealt with by the Housing or Environmental Health Department of your District Council and they will only be considered following a referral from an Occupational Therapist (normally employed by Social Services) specifying what alterations or adaptations are required to address the disabled person’s needs. You should not assume that you will automatically qualify for a grant, as they are means tested.

There are two types of DFG:

  • Mandatory Grants for essential adaptations. These aim to give the disabled person freedom of movement into and around their home and proper facilities within it.

The types of work that can be assisted include: -

  • Measures to make it easier to get into and out of the dwelling by, for example, widening doors and installing ramps;
  • Works to ensure the safety of the disabled person and other occupants by, for example, providing a specially adapted room in which it would be safe to leave a disabled person unattended;
  • Provision of proper bedroom, kitchen, toilet and personal washing facilities;
  • Improving or providing a heating system suitable to the needs of the disabled person;
  • Adapting heating or lighting controls to make them easier to use; and
  • Improving access and movement around the home to enable the disabled person to care for another person who lives in the property.

“Mandatory” means that the Council must give this type of grant (subject to the applicant meeting all the qualifying conditions).

Discretionary Assistance (“Discretionary” means that the Council has the choice as to whether to assist)

  • To make a dwelling or building suitable for the accommodation, welfare or employment of the disabled occupant in any other respect.

Each District Council has its own written policy which details what kind of discretionary assistance (if any) will be offered. For example, loans may be offered rather than grants in some areas.  Your local policy

How is the grant calculated?

The amount of grant is decided by a means test which looks at the income and capital of the disabled person and their spouse or partner. Where the disabled person is a child under the age of nineteen, the means of the disabled person’s parents are taken into account.

The test calculates the disabled person’s average weekly income, taking account of any savings above a certain limit and certain state benefits. This is then set against an assessment of basic needs to reflect outgoings.

If the disabled person’s resources are less than this assessment, they will not normally need to contribute to the cost of the works.

If the disabled person’s resources are more than the assessment, then a proportion of their income will be used to calculate the size of the loan they can afford as a contribution towards the cost of the works. The applicant’s assessed contribution will be deducted from the cost of the eligible works up to the grant limit [maximum £25,000]. Where the assessed contribution is less than the cost of the works, the difference between the two is paid as a DFG.

Getting Started

Contact your Social Services Department, Housing or Environmental Health Department of your local District Council or a Home Improvement Agency if one works in your area and ask them for guidance. They will explain and help you through the process. Remember – do not start work before receiving Disabled Facilities Grant approval. If you do, you will lose any entitlement to grant aid.

Other Adaptations

Help is available in some areas with essential minor adaptations such as handrails and grab-rails. Assistance can also be given with the provision of specialist equipment such as bath hoists. For further information contact your Social Service Department.

WildCry Technical Services have years of experience working with Occupational Therapists designing and specifying all types of adaptations for the less-abled

Works include:

  • Level access showers & bathroom adaptations
  • Accessible kitchens for wheelchair users
  • Ramped access
  • Stair lifts and Through-the-floor lifts along with necessary structural alterations
  • Visual & impaired hearing adaptations
  • Whole house adaptations
  • Extensions
  • Purpose designed new-build properties
  • etc

We understand the mobility needs of  the less-abled and can advise on all structural alterations and enhancements.

WildCry Technical Services

Promoting Independent Living

Advice, design, drawings, building control applications, OT liaison…..through to on site construction & inspection of works

Call Malcolm Harvey on 07879 641047 for friendly advice.