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A Guide to Accessible Ramps for Wheelchairs

If you or a loved one use a wheelchair, installing a ramp is a simple way to make your home more accessible. Simply getting into or out of the house is far simpler and safer with a well-made ramp in place, but actually installing it can be a complicated process.

If you have already implemented handrails or a stairlift in your home, fitting an exterior ramp to the front or back of a property requires a little more preparation. You should be sure that a wheelchair ramp is both viable and safe before you start installing it. Any mistakes could prove to be expensive to fix and, ultimately, dangerous.

In this post, we cover essential details on installing accessible ramps for wheelchairs, from the main benefits to important questions to ask.

What Benefits Do Wheelchair Ramps Offer?

Here are just some of the benefits provided by wheelchair ramps:

Get Simpler, Safer Access

Wheelchair users can use a ramp to enter or exit their own home easily. If they currently depend on a caregiver or loved one to lift them up or down a set of steps, a ramp would be able to help them get out or into their home more safely and conveniently.

A ramp will also reduce the risk of accidents and injuries for both the user and anyone helping them.

Provide Wheelchair Users with More Independence

Various accessibility aids can provide wheelchair users with more independence, from stairlifts to handrails and ramps. They will be able to move inside and outside their own home without relying on assistance.

Accommodate Guests with Various Mobility Limitations

Wheelchair users may have friends or relatives living with mobility limitations, whether they depend on a cane or a scooter. Anyone who finds it tough or impossible to use steps will feel safer when a wheelchair ramp is available.

Potentially Increase Your Home’s Value

Installing a ramp could increase the value of your home: prospective buyers may be on the lookout for an accessible property and willing to pay your preferred price. Especially if they’re keen to avoid the cost and effort of making modifications themselves down the line.

Essential Questions to Ask When Installing a Wheelchair Ramp

When adding a wheelchair ramp to your home, answering the following questions can make the process easier:

Who Will Be Using the Ramp?

Always prioritize the needs of the ramp’s primary user. The ramp must be strong, wide, and secure enough to accommodate them and their wheelchair safely.

Using material that is too weak to support the user and their chair will put them at risk. Similarly, avoid making the ramp too narrow: ensure there is enough space for a caregiver who may push or walk alongside the wheelchair user.

Where is the Ideal Placement for the Ramp?

Your wheelchair ramp should be placed at the entrances and exits most commonly used, but check that it’s safe to do so first. Consider the location and the potential issues carefully before beginning installation.

Will there be enough free space for the ramp to be used safely? Are the connected doorways wide enough to accommodate the chair, or will they need to be widened? Thorough checks will avoid wasted time and money.

What Local Regulations Do I Need to Follow?

Ask an expert or check rules and regulations on home modifications in your area before you start work. Confirm that you can install a wheelchair ramp (and any other external accessibility aids), otherwise you could face a fine or worse. Even if you’re already confident that you won’t violate any rules, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Can I Get Funding for My Wheelchair Ramp?

Ontario residents may still be able to take advantage of the Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit, designed to help homeowners implement accessibility modifications in a cost-effective way.

Wheelchair ramps are one of the many eligible renovations that you can claim for, alongside corridor handrails, wheel-in showers, and widening passage doors. Find out more about the Ontario Seniors’ Home Safety Tax Credit.

Depending on the persons situation and area they live in, there may be funding available to assist with paying for accessibility modification, in Ontario March of Dimes has programs that may assist, Home and Vehicle Accessibility I March of Dimes Canada

What Other Safety Features Should I Install to Maximize Accessibility and Safety?

A wide range of accessibility aids are available to make your home safer for wheelchair users, and you may install one or more of these to complement your ramp.

A stairlift is one of the best types of product available: the user simply sits in the comfortable seat and uses the controls to move up or down stairs safely. Numerous models are available to suit varied needs, and they can be fitted to straight or curved staircases.

Accessibility modifications can completely transform bathrooms, kitchens, and bedrooms. These modifications done by a professional will add value to your home as well as make everyday life easier for the homeowner and caregivers..

Speak to a trusted provider of accessibility solutions for advice and recommendations. They will help you understand what modifications will be best for your personal needs and home.

How Can You Have a Wheelchair Ramp Installed at Home?

If you or a loved one will benefit from a wheelchair ramp, what should be your next step? How do you go from having the idea to making it a reality?

Total Access Solutions has more than 30 years of experience providing customers with accessibility-enhancing products. We work with the best manufacturers to ensure that we only provide you with the finest solutions on the market, whether you need a stairlift, vehicle lift, grab rail, or any other accessibility aid.

Our team can install a wheelchair ramp outside your home to suit your unique requirements. We’ll provide you with a free consultation and home assessment to discuss your needs in detail.

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