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Adapting your home

If you're finding it difficult to get around your home, altering or adapting your home might help.

Adaptations are improvements or repairs that can help disabled, injured and older people to live safely and independently in their own homes.

Examples of adaptations can include:

  • rails on paths and stairs
  • ramps
  • wider doorways  
  • stair lifts
  • lever taps 
  • walk-in showers 
  • chair or bed raisers

Minor adaptations

Minor adaptations are simple adaptations that cost less than £1,000 such as grab rails, hand rails or alterations to steps.

Adaptations can be arranged privately and details of local providers can be found in our directory.

If you would like the council to arrange for minor adaptations to your home, you will have to have an assessment of your needs. If the assessment shows that you qualify for support from us, an occupational therapist will make recommendations about what adaptations would be most appropriate for you.

If you agree to have the adaptation work completed, we will arrange for a technician to visit you at home.

There is no charge for this work. However, if you live in privately rented accommodation or housing associations then the owner of the property will need to give written consent to the work being carried out.

Major adaptations

Major adaptations are more significant, structural alterations to your home such as level access showers, ramps or stair lifts.

Arranging major adaptations privately

Adaptations to your home can be arranged privately, but if you would like advice we can arrange for an occupational therapist to assess your needs and make recommendations about the type of equipment and adaptations you need.

If you need help organising the work, Barnet Care and Repair Agency can help with finding a builder and supervising the works through to competition. 

Arranging major adaptations through council

If you'd like the council to arrange for major adaptations to your home, you'll have to have a needs assessment.

We can't guarantee your request for major adaptations to your home will be agreed, as you'll need to meet our eligibility criteria. For major adaptations, the works must be necessary and appropriate to meet the needs of a person who has a critical and substantial need. 

If the assessment shows that you qualify for support from us, an occupational therapist will make recommendations about what adaptations would be most appropriate for your needs. It is important that the required adaptations are reasonable and practicable in terms of the actual property. In some instances where an adaptation is not possible, moving home may be a more suitable option.

For more information or to find out if you are eligible for support speak to your allocated occupational therapist or social worker. If you do not have allocated occupational therapist or social worker, contact Social Care Direct on 020 8359 5000.

Funding major adaptations

Adaptations can be paid for in a number of ways depending on who owns the property you live in:

  • if you own your property or are a private tenant you may qualify for a Disabled Facilities Grant to fund the work. 
  • if you live in council property, we'll arrange for Barnet Homes to carry out the work. If substantial adaptations are required, you may be offered the opportunity to move to another house, which is more suited to your needs
  • if you live in a housing association property, the housing association will normally pay for the adaptation. If they don't have the funds available, you may qualify for a Disabled Facilities Grant and your case will be referred to Environmental Health Service

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