Remodeling homes to increase the comfort and meet the needs of the handicapped remains one of the primary focuses in the industry in 2021. With 1 in 4 adults in the U.S. (or 61 million Americans) living with some kind of a disability, there’s no wonder that meeting accessibility standards is paramount.
Whether you work in the remodeling industry or want to make life easier for a loved one, incorporating the right accessibility features can go a long way. Read on below to discover the most promising accessibility modifications in 2021.
Home exterior modification
Remodeling exterior spaces to meet the needs of the handicapped can be a real challenge for remodelers, especially when it comes to entrances. Here are some of the most important consideration in terms of exterior accessibility:
- Build ramps at the front. having a ramp is essential both for those in wheelchairs and with mobility difficulties. Many homeowners tend to put ramps in the garage or at the rear, instead of the front, which can be inconvenient and use up too much space due to the required 1:12 slope ratio. To avoid this, you can incorporate custom L-shaped ramps.
- Make sure that sidewalks and walkways are wide enough and incorporate lower maintenance sidings
- Consider eliminating threshold entrances or at least avoiding them
Bathrooms are another key area in terms of accessibility. Since they can be quite small, some creativity is often necessary. Remodeling experts recommend the following ideas:
- Expanding a bathroom into an adjacent room or creating a new bathroom from a spare room.
- Adding curbless showers and walk-in bathtubs. These showers and bathtubs don’t have thresholds and often feature benches for added comfort and support.
- Installing grab bars, handrails and other support accessories
- Increasing open spaces and ensuring enough turning radius for wheelchairs
- Incorporating lever-handled sinks or hands-free controls
- Using an ADA-height toilets and installing risers if necessary
In 2021, you can increase the accessibility of a kitchen in a number of popular ways, including roll-under and sit-down sinks, wheelchair-length appliances, and multi-height countertops. Some other considerations may include designing lower storage spaces and arranging appliances in a way that facilitates work. Kitchen accessibility features are great for those who want to maintain an independent life or even entertain their friends and family at home.
Remodeling master suites
Handicap-accessible master suites have risen in popularity in recent years because of their ample space and luxurious feel. There are several ways in which master suites can be made more accessible, including designing open or walk-in closets, using the aforementioned bathroom accessibility features, incorporating accessible and convenient storage, maximizing natural lighting, and more.
Remodeling common spaces
While kitchens, bathrooms, and master suites are some of the more obvious areas for incorporating accessibility features, there are also essential considerations to be made in common spaces. This is necessary in order to meet handicap accessibility requirements and ensure convenience and comfort. Here are some of the most common accessibility features in common spaces:
- Wider doorways to accommodate for walkers and wheelchairs. This makes the home more accessible for the handicapped.
- Installing automatic doors and replacing round door knobs with lever handles
- Widening hallways and incorporating more open spaces
- Keeping all areas well-lit and bright by maximizing natural light
- Selecting handicap-friendly home accessories
- Adding custom flooring and removing unnecessary thick carpets and rugs as they can be a tripping hazard. Consider using safer flooring options such as hardwood, vinyl or ceramic flooring.
In general, common spaces should be designed to have ample space, be as barrier-free as possible and well-lit, as well as be convenient and functional for both the handicapped individual and any other residents of the home.
Combining accessibility and aesthetics
It is clear that functionality is a key element of handicap-friendly homes in 2021. However, remodelers are working hard to bring solutions that are aesthetically pleasing in addition to being accessible. Many customers have this as one of their priorities because they want to be able to sell their home as a high-end property, and not just one with handicap accessibility. And they may just want to have nice homes for themselves, too.
Bathrooms, for example, can be made more aesthetically pleasing and accessible at the same time by installing half-walls instead of bars around the toilet. Another tip is to install thin, elegant, yet sturdy rails that also look like towel racks.
Designers and remodelers predict that this line of work (i.e. combining accessibility and aesthetics) will continue to grow. Homeowners are likely to find more and more trendy handicap-friendly accessories on the market as years go by. This seems to be the case because a growing number of baby boomers seem to be opting for remodels and living with their own parents instead of moving into nursing homes.
Rely on Elite Remodeling for cutting-edge accessibility remodeling in Dallas
Elite Remodeling is a nationally certified remodeling company that specializes in state-of-the-art accessible design. We are committed to meeting the needs of individuals with disabilities across the U.S. as well as boosting the aesthetic appeal of their homes. We are your trusted partners if you’d like to make life easier and more comfortable for your loved one in 2021. Get in touch with us today and rely on our dedicated and experienced team to provide you with tailored accessibility solutions you will love.