What is Home Modification?
Home Modification refers to converting or adapting the environment in order to make performing task easier, reduce accidents and support independent living. These modifications may include structural changes or adding accessibility and assistive technology at home.
Who needs Home Modification?
We have identified five general groups of people who can benefit from adapting their environment.
Older adults who want to age in place
Families who have children with disabilities
Adults with disabilities
Baby Boomers planning for the future
People of all ages.
Why is it important?
Quality of Life – Modifications can allow persons to easily engage in major life activities or even minor tasks.
Home Safety – The addition of supportive features can help reduce accidents such as falls, a leading cause of death for older Americans. Home modifications can reduce the demands of the environment while making the home safer and more supportive.
Cost Effective – Research indicates that home modification and assistive devices along with an occupational therapists assessment can substantially reduce case management, nursing, and institutional care expenditures for older persons, even to the extent of delaying institutionalization.
Solution for Older Home Design – About 53% of homes owned by older persons in 1995 were built prior to 1960 . These homes have aged in place themselves. It presents hazards and lacks the features to help people age in place.
Caregiver Convenience – The home environment functions as a service delivery locus. Its condition and supportiveness affects the capacities of formal and informal caregivers and service agencies to provide assistance.
What is the difference between Home modification and Universal Design?
Home modification is retrofitting an existing home to make it more accessible and safe. On the other hand, the intent of universal design is to simplify life for everyone by making products, communications, and the built environment more useable by as many people as possible at little or no extra cost. This concept is applied to the design of a home before it is built.
How do we do Home Modification projects?
Accessibility in the home can and should be individualized and neatly tailored to meet the personal needs, tastes and budget of the users rather than a standardized solutions. A product or solution that works for one client may or may not be appropriate for another. These are the steps on how we do Home Modification Projects.
Assessment – A certified Accessibility Specialist or a licensed Occupational Therapist will conduct a comprehensive assessment that will break the basic problem down into its component parts or tasks ( task assessment).
Analysis – We will analyze each of those tasks, and relate them to the client’s functional abilities
Recommendation – We will create a list of all the areas of need, or all of the component tasks for which some special help from home modification and accessibility product is required.
Design – We will conceptualize and make a lists of the design characteristics of each potential solution that will address those tasks and needs.
Build –We will execute the approved design base on specifications.