Most homeowners, if they were told they could no longer use the entire upstairs area of their house, would be devastated. The reality is that, for many people, this is a fact of life.
For seniors and others with mobility restrictions, stairs can be one of the biggest challenges you face when moving around in your home. Having a stair lift installed is a great solution to help you age at home.
Here we look at the benefits of stair lifts, the types of stair lifts you can install in a private house, and the cost of having a stair lift installed at home.
Benefits of Stair Lifts
A stair lift allows you to get safely up and down the staircase in your home, without risking a fall.
The chair of the lift should be at a comfortable height for you to sit down and stand
Most stair lifts have built-in safety features that stop the lift from moving if the seat, footrest, or armrests are not in their proper positions.
Very important – a locking system will prevent anyone else from using the chair if you live in a family home, especially children!
There can be few things more disheartening than having no option but to relocate from your home, if you age or become disabled. With a stair lift, you can stay where you are, and still be able to live in your entire house, just as you always have.
A professional installer will need to evaluate the angle and length of your staircase, to fit a rail on the side of the staircase that you prefer. The seat, armrests and footrests of the chair can also be set at the optimum height for the user.
Contrary to what you might think, stair lifts are fitted to the stair risers, and not to the wall of the stairwell. Generally speaking, you should expect a fairly quick installation that won’t affect your home interior in any major way.
Types of S
Straight stair lifts
Straight, indoor stair lifts are the most common type of lifts installed by homeowners. They are designed for any indoor staircase that doesn’t have turns, curves, or landings. This is the least expensive type of stair lift.
Custom curved stair lifts
Custom curved stair lifts have rails that are custom-built to suit a curved staircase. They range from a simple curve, to a lift with multiple landings and turns. If you’ve got the budget, there’s hardly any limit to what you can install!
Custom curved stair lifts have rails that are custom-built to suit a curved staircase. They range from a simple
Outdoor stair lifts
Outdoor stair lifts are designed to withstand the great outdoors. They are durable and can handle sub-zero temperatures, rain, and the sun’s UV rays. If you have a raised porch, a split-level garden, or a private jetty with stairs, you don’t have to stop enjoying these outdoor features of your home.
The top stair lift brands offer an extensive range of options to suit your needs and budget. Top brands include Acorn, Bruno and Harmar.
Stair Lift Cost
For many people interested in a stair lift, the cost can seem prohibitive. These appliances don’t really come at a budget price! But for some, being able to move safely and freely around all areas of your home is worth the expense.
You won’t have to sell up and relocate, or pay for a carer. So you should do a “stair lift cost-benefit analysis” and decide if it’s right for you!
Most stair lift installations are custom-built to suit your home, at least to some degree. You can expect to pay the least amount of money for a standard, no-frills straight stair lift for a relatively short staircase of 12-14 steps. You’ll pay more for a curved lift, or a rugged outdoor lift.
If you want special features like an extra-strong seat and rail for bariatric users, a powered swivel seat, custom upholstery to match your home décor, or any other add-ons – the price will go up accordingly!
If you’re looking for online bargains, you can probably find more affordable stair lift options at the big e-commerce retailers. However, bear in mind that these lifts might have to be altered to fit your staircase. They’ll also have to be installed by a professional – and the price of these extra services won’t be included.
Below is the price range you should expect to budget for, if you’re in the stair lift market. These prices include installation costs and warranty.
$ 2,000 - $ 5,000
from $ 10,000
$ 3,500 - $ 6,000
from $ 12,000
Stair lifts can be made to fit any home, no matter how what kind of staircase you have. We especially like the outdoor options, for people who want to continue to enjoy their porches, gardens, or jetties!
While a stair lift is a great way to maintain independence and age in the comfort of your own home, it can be a relatively expensive installation. You’re probably wondering what the downsides are.
For one, Medicare doesn’t cover the cost of stair lifts, as they’re considered to be home modifications, and not “durable medical equipment”.
There are other funding options, though, if you’re interested in a stair lift. Senior organisations can often help you fund a stair lift installation. If you’re a military veteran, you might be able to secure funding through the VA.
Many people are under the impression that stair lifts are ADA compliant, but they’re not. The rules and regulations laid out by the ADA don’t cover stair lifts. This won’t be a problem if you’re a private homeowner who will be using the lift yourself. If you’re going to use your home as an AirBnB or guesthouse, however, it’s important to be aware of this issue.
All in all, if you make sure you pick the right option for your home, and are fully aware of all the facts, these installations can be worth every penny of expense. After all, you’re young at heart, and you deserve independence and safety at home!