01 | Existing and New Homes

Planning a new home for a person with a disability

For a new home for a person with a disability, agree “pre-planning”, with as many stakeholders as possible, the type of dwelling (apartment, duplex or house), the size of the dwelling, the best location for the dwelling, any specific internal and external works that may be required, and any additional construction costs.

For a social housing project designed to meet the needs of a person with a disability, an up-to-date occupational therapist’s report will be required. If a person has a condition that may progress, causing their housing design requirement to change into the future, this should be taken into account.

Ideally, the person who is to live in a particular dwelling will be known when the dwelling is being designed.

Where the future occupant has not been identified, the dwelling should be designed to accommodate their anticipated needs, based on a generic design and in such a way as to ensure that the person’s specific requirements, once they are identified, have minimal impact on the building contract and programme.

Occasions may arise where it is best to omit works from the main building contract and have them carried out at a later stage, when the requirements of the occupant are known. The best way of contractually managing this should be agreed by the design/project team.

Generally, fittings, such as furniture, curtains and white goods, which may not form part of the building contract, may be agreed with the occupant at any time prior to the dwelling being occupied.