Stairlifts are mobility aids that can be added to your home stairwell to help with moving up and down the stairs. They can assist with a variety of conditions that make it challenging for individuals to access certain levels of their home. There are various options when it comes to choosing the best stairlift for your home and mobility needs. Features that will affect the installation include the type of stairwell, whether it is for a wheelchair or not, and the location of the stairs being either indoors or outdoors. The process may feel overwhelming when deciding on buying a stairlift. If you are finding yourself facing this undertaking, with no clear idea of where to begin, here are some things to consider.
WHAT IS A STAIRLIFT?
A stairlift is a mechanical chair device that is installed on a rail on an existing staircase. It is used to move an individual with a mobility impairment from one level of their house to another. Sometimes stairlifts are mounted in a home when a person is aging and using the stairs has become a negative contributing factor to their health. Other times, the person might have a degenerative disease where rigorous mobility like stair climbing is worsening or aggravating their symptoms. Stairlifts are often added to a home after a person has had a fall or as a way of preventing a fall.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF STAIRLIFTS?
There are different options when it comes to choosing which stairlift to add to your home. The stairlifts from StairLiftHelper.co.uk vary between new or reconditioned types depending on your specifics. There are other factors to consider when selecting the type of lift, but the installation experts will likely assist you with this. Things considered are the type of stairs, and whether they are straight or curving. The length of stairs, if it is only a few steps, or if it’s a long flight. If the lift needed is going to be in the house or outdoors, it will affect the type of lift and chair used. How narrow or wide and steep the incline of your stairwell are also elements that will be taken into account before the installation process. If you are needing a stairlift for yourself, or someone in your household who uses a wheelchair, then a different type of stairlift would be used, instead of the standard seated option.
WHAT ABOUT THE COSTS?
CHEAPER THAN A HOME LIFT
While stairlifts might appear to be a rather major, costly addition to your home. They work out to be a lot less of a process and expense than many of your alternatives. If you consider installing a residential lift, they require a specific architectural structure within your home to support the shaft. These lifts take a long time to install, and can be seen as bulkier and noisier, and are undoubtedly much more expensive. The average cost of a stairlift is anywhere between $3000 – $5000 depending on the specifications, whereas for a home lift you can pay anything between $25000 – $60000.
CHEAPER THAN A NEW HOUSE
Another line of thought for many aged individuals is that mobility challenges require moving into a new house without stairs. The process of installing a stairlift is much less of a process than buying, moving, and resettling. Not to mention a whole lot cheaper. A bonus is that many medical aids will cover some or most of the cost of installation of your stairlift. In certain first world countries, like the UK, the public NHS will pay partially or fully for home modifications, such as stairlifts, if deemed necessary upon assessment. This would come from a mobility grant that you might be entitled to access.
CAN STAIRLIFTS BE GLAMOROUS?
We all remember that scene from Notting Hill where the gorgeous British actress Georgina McKee, who is wheelchair-bound in the film, says goodnight to her guests Hugh Grant, Julia Roberts, et. al., while her husband carries her up the apartment stairs to bed. Now re-imagine the scene as she gracefully AND independently ascends from the living room to her bedroom, on her automated stairlift, waving goodnight to her guests. We need more scenes like that from Hollywood! But that is a discussion for another day. The point is, modern-day stairlifts have many options for sleek and simple designs, allowing you to maintain the chic aesthetic of you and your home.
There are many factors to consider when choosing to install a stairlift in your home. Your reasons for installation will also depend on your or your loved one’s physical health, as well as home design needs. Take some time to consider these points when making the decision and hopefully, it will make the process a lot more seamless, and possibly even exciting, for you.