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Planning your home for wheelchair accessibility

Creating your house with the future in mind
Published on Dec 16, 2005

In many housing markets these days, housing prices are rising at a much faster rate than personal income. Many buyers are finding that their first house may be their only house, and they want to plan for the long haul. That is, they want a house where they can still live comfortably when they are pushing 85 and likely to be physically less able. These buyers may want the to-die-for kitchen in the here-and-now, but they also want amenities that will accommodate their physical needs many years down the line. What should they be asking for? Many modifications that accommodate a physical disability can be made as they are needed. The ones to focus on when the house is being built are the ones that will be easy to incorporate during the planning and construction, but very expensive or impossible to add or change later. For example, a house with 36-inch-wide doorways throughout will be much easier to negotiate in a wheelchair than the standard 30-inch and even 28-inch doorways found in mos...

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