The disabled facilities grant is a mandatory ‘means-tested’ financial grant. It helps meet the cost of adapting a property (including mobile homes and houseboats) where a disabled person lives.
Who is considered disabled?
.For the purposes of the grant, a disabled person is someone who:
- has a sight, hearing or substantial speech impairment
- has a learning difficulty, severe challenging behaviours, a mental health disorder or impairment of any kind
- is substantially physically disabled by illness, injury or impairment
- is, or could be, registered with the social services department as being disabled.
What kind of help can the grant provide?
You could get:
- a grant
- a loan
- or any mix of the above.
Local authorities may also provide additional adaptations. For example:
- Welfare: access to a garden or safe play area for a disabled child
- Accommodation: Making a property bigger even if it is already suitable for a disabled person
- Employment: Adapting a room for a disabled person to work from home.
Who can apply for a Disabled Facilities Grant?
You must be:
- an owner-occupier
- A private tenant
- A landlord with a disabled tenant
- A local authority tenant
- A housing association tenant.
What adaptations will a Disabled Facilities Grant fund?
The grant aims to ensure the disabled person has adequate facilities and access around the home.
- providing ramps, widening doors, shallow steps
- improving controls for heating and lighting
- adapting or providing suitable washing, bathing or toilet facilities
- ensuring the disabled person can move around and access parts of the home so they can look after someone else
- facilitating the preparation of food and cooking in the kitchen
- making sure there is access to a shared family room
- ensuring access to, or providing, a room to sleep in
- providing a safer environment for the disabled person and others living in the home
- installing a stair lift or a ‘through the floor’ lift
- creating an extension to meet the needs of the disabled person.
The means test
The means test determines how much, if anything, you will have to pay towards the cost of the work. If you are a disabled adult, you must provide financial and benefits information for you and your partner. There is no means testing for families of disabled children under 18.
- Certain benefits including Disability Living Allowance and Income Support are generally ignored
- Savings over £6,000 will be taken into account
- Depending on the assessment, the amount of financial assistance offered can vary up to 100% of the cost.
Plans and specifications
For major work, it’s advisable to involve a qualified architect or surveyor. Their fees can be included in the cost of the work needed.
- You will need at least two estimates
- You must submit your grant application with all relevant documents
- The local authority must give a decision within six months and tell you what your financial contribution, if any, will be.