Four Features Homebuyers living with disabilities should look for
Whether you are a senior who is looking to age in place or a homebuyer who is living with disabilities, finding an accessible home can seem challenging. Aside from the usual steps needed to find and buy a new home such as connecting with a dedicated and skilled realtor like John Cordeira at Cordeira Homes, you also need to worry about finding certain features to make your life easier and safer. If you’re not sure where to start when it comes to identifying features that can make a home more accessible, know that focusing on these can help:
Safe flooring is so important for both seniors and those who have disabilities. If you use a wheelchair or walker, for example, the best flooring options tend to be ones that will allow those medical devices to move smoothly from room to room, without presenting a risk for serious slips and falls. Hardwood is one of the top choices for accessible flooring. But if you find a home that interests you and it has carpet, know that you can always budget for hardwood floors to be installed in the future. Hardwood floor installations can vary in cost and time needed for completion. In addition to the size of your room(s), you will also need to factor in additional expenses for subfloor repairs, old flooring disposal, and furniture removal. Plus, the type of wood used can impact project costs.
When it comes to a home’s entryway, making modifications can prove more difficult. In terms of aging in place, fully accessible entryways can be essential for preventing dangerous falls that can result in life-altering injuries. So if you are a senior or have mobility limitations, look for homes that feature step-less entryways and doorways wide enough for your wheelchair or walker to fit through safely. You should also look for doors that swing inward, including screen or storm doors, and levers rather than knobs. If you find a new home with entryway stairs, also know that you can always consider having a wheelchair ramp or lift installed before or after you move into your new home, so research and weigh both of these accessibility modifications (it averages $3,250 to have a ramp installed).
If you are currently living with low vision, then focusing on home updates that will accommodate your disability is essential. One of the most pressing needs for those who are affected by low vision is having even and ample lighting throughout the home. From the lawn to interior rooms to stairwells, looking for a properly lit home can reduce your risk for falls and serious injuries. So try to make sure that your new home has the lighting you need to stay safe in your everyday routine. If you are a senior homebuyer, focusing on lighting can be wise as well. Many seniors struggle with vision changes as they age, which is why most aging in place experts recommend the installation of additional lighting fixtures, brighter light bulbs, and even smart light features.
When investors and contractors build accessible apartments, they tend to adjust certain home features to accommodate the usage of wheelchairs. Installing lower countertops is one of the most common features included in these accessible apartments, so if you currently use a wheelchair you should also look for potential homes with this helpful feature. The difference is a mere 6 inches, so you may be able to find a new home that meets your needs or at least comes close. Since lowered countertops are such a niche feature, you may also need to consider buying a home and remodeling the bathrooms or kitchen at a later date. Counters can comprise the bulks of costs when it comes to these projects, so look for ways to maximize your savings.
When creating your home-buying budget, it’s crucial that you include the cost of any accessibility modifications you may need to make. So while home sale prices have averaged $525,000 in Long Island, you have to keep in mind the additional costs of any remodeling or adaptations.
Moving into an accessible home can make life easier when you are living with disabilities or looking to age in place. So if you fall into either of these categories, try to look for homes that come with the additional features you need. Also, research the costs to add those accessibility features so you will be prepared to adjust your target home price accordingly.
For world-class service and superior results, connect with expert realtor John Cordeira! 516-526-8077 or John@Cordeira.com