For homeowners, an accessible home is much more than a convenience — it’s a necessity. Wheelchair ramps with a platform can play a vital role in ensuring homes are accessible for anyone living in the home, especially older adults with limited mobility. 

In this brief guide, we’ll provide a thorough understanding of the importance, benefits, and process of setting up wheelchair ramps with platforms in your home.

What Are Wheelchair Ramps?

A wheelchair ramp is a sloping surface that allows users of wheelchairs and other mobility devices, as well as individuals pushing strollers or carts, to easily access a building or room with a change in elevation. They come in various types including portable ramps, threshold ramps, and vehicle ramps among others.

A wheelchair ramp with a platform is a ramp that includes a flat area (platform), usually at the top, bottom, or in between the inclines. These platforms provide space for the wheelchair user to rest or change direction safely.

Benefits of Having a Wheelchair Ramp with a Platform at Home

A wheelchair ramp with a platform offers increased mobility for wheelchair or mobility device users, providing them with the freedom to move around their home independently. The safety aspect is especially significant, as the platforms offer stable areas where users can pause safely if needed. 

For most homeowners, installing wheelchair ramps and other home modifications provides the ability for older adults to “age in place,” or remain living in their homes as long as possible. These types of improvements give them the chance to stay safe, mobile, and comfortable, even if they live alone.

Having this type of ramp can add value to your property by making it more appealing to potential buyers who have accessibility needs. Installing these ramps also promotes inclusivity by allowing guests of all abilities to visit.

Planning for a Wheelchair Ramp With a Platform

There are several factors to consider when planning to install this type of ramp. First, you’ll want to understand the specific needs and capabilities of the user. How steep can the ramp be? How much space is needed on the platform? How many ramps may be needed in and around the home? 

Available space for the ramp installation and local regulations or standards must also be factored in. Once you have all your relevant information, you’ll also need to create a budget that accounts for each aspect of the ramp installation, including purchasing the ramp and paying for installation, inspection, and maintenance.

Different Designs of Wheelchair Ramps

The design of the ramp will largely depend on your home’s layout and the user’s needs. Straight designs are simple and efficient, while L-shaped or U-shaped ramps can fit into corners, around obstacles, or up higher elevations. 

A switchback design, involving a series of platforms and ramps changing direction, may be necessary for steep inclines. Ensure that the platform size is large enough for the user to turn around comfortably.

There are also different kinds of ramps for use indoors and outdoors. When considering your options, you’ll want to consider factors such as design and style, materials, ease of installation, and price. 

Installation is an especially important consideration. While some homeowners choose the DIY route, most need to hire professionals. DIY installation can be cost-effective, but it requires skill, specific tools, and attention to safety standards. Hiring a professional makes sure the job is done correctly and safely. 

How Much Does a Wheelchair Ramp With a Platform Cost?

The cost of installing a wheelchair ramp with a platform varies widely, depending on factors like materials used, size, complexity of design, and whether you opt for professional installation.Simple folding or threshold ramps could cost a few hundred dollars while aluminum ramps with platforms will typically range from $2000-$5000. The longer and more complex the ramp needs to be will increase cost. Plan your budget carefully, considering not just the upfront cost but also any potential maintenance expenses.

Find Help With Wheelchair Ramps at Omicelo Health

Omicelo Health is a non-profit organization that assists homeowners in modifying their homes to age in place safely. Our team of accessibility experts can answer questions about improving home safety, comfort, and independence. If you need help with wheelchair ramps or any other home modifications, please reach out to us.

Installing a wheelchair ramp with a platform at home increases accessibility, enhances safety, and improves the quality of life for those with mobility challenges. It’s an investment in comfort and independence that brings years of benefits for older adults.