Accessibility Tips For Hosting Guests
If there’s one thing we’ve all learned over the last 12 months, it’s how much we can come to miss the small joys of hosting guests. But regardless of whether you’re hosting someone from your core bubble, or planning a visit for when restrictions are lifted, if you have a family member or friend with accessibility needs, there are certain steps you can take to make their experience that much easier. This is especially important if they’re going to be regular visitors to your home.
While you might not be able to fix or accommodate every need for accessibility, at least informing visitors of the situation can help alleviate unexpected stress.
Take A Look At Access Points
For people with mobility and accessibility needs, how they have to get into a building can really affect their experience and set the tone.
You should be considering whether or not the front door or primary access method is suited to their needs. If it isn’t, if for example there are steps or narrow openings, then it could help to direct them to alternative access points that may be easier.
This also applies to the area around your home, when it comes to things such as parking, and the accessibility of driveways, sidewalks, and pathways.
Install A Ramp
It’s worth keeping in mind that these days, a lot of new-build homes will be built with step-less access to ensure a greater degree of accessibility for all. But if not, and if there are no other access points, it may be worth investing in a ramp: either temporary or permanent.
When doing so, also note that handrails and a non-slip surface may also be required.
If you don’t have a ramp, it’s worth keeping in mind that your guest may have their own portable one, so be sure to let them know in advance if it might be required.
Doors And Hallways
For many people with accessibility and mobility needs, navigating doorways and hallways can be an unwieldy obstacle. But there are a few things you can do to make things easier for guests who are visiting.
If you’re planning on having a family member visit regularly, you should consider installing an automatic door system that will mean they don’t have to struggle to reach for handles.
Alternatively, you could just ensure that any doors they need to use are left open and accessible at all times. Using something as simple as a doorstop can help make your home more accessible.
When it comes to hallways, it’s important to make sure the width can fit their wheelchair or mobility aid, and try and keep them as clear of clutter and obstacles as possible.
For all hallways and rooms make sure their path is as clear and easy to navigate:
Rearrange the furniture to ensure an easy path to and from any seating areas, and ensure there is enough space for wheelchairs or crutches to move through.
If your guests will be staying overnight, you will also need to make sure there’s enough space around the bed for their wheelchair, crutches, or frames. As well as ensuring they can safely store them in an accessible position for when they wake up.
Remove any thick carpets or rugs, as these can be difficult surfaces for wheelchair users to navigate.
Bathrooms are one of the trickiest areas for people with mobility and accessibility needs to navigate. But that’s something you can help ease with a few key purchases, especially If it’s more than just a one-time visit — and with close friends and family that’s likely the case.
First up we have grab rails: these can be installed near both the toilet and bath or shower, making them easier for guests to use.
If you’re interested in investing in a grab rail, we stock a number of great ones right here.
Likewise, depending on your setup, it would be wise to invest in either a bath board or a seat. If this isn’t possible, it would be a good idea to let your guest know, so they can prepare in advance by bringing their own.
Finally, if you don’t regularly use a shower or bath mat when getting in and out, making sure you have one in your bathroom will help reduce the risk of falls.
No matter what you’re looking to change, we have many products to help your or a loved one’s accessibility and mobility needs. We have a wide range of all of the highest quality products, as well as years of experience helping people find the right solutions for them. You can browse our products online, or simply get in touch with us today!