Thursday, August 30, 2007

City may give disabled people more help with adapting their homes

An article from the Yorkshire Post.

By Andrew Robinson

Leeds Council is proposing to give disabled people more freedom with a £2m boost to help them live independently in their own homes.

Its Executive Board is to consider giving an extra £2m to assist disabled Leeds home-owners meet the cost of necessary modifications to their houses.This would almost double the present budget to £4.5m.Private homeowners and tenants with disabled members of their household are eligible for grants up to £25,000 to adapt their homes to improve access to and around the home. These adaptations can range from external ramps to special showers, stair lifts and even extensions.

The council's own agency offers applicants help in designing and drawing up the works schedule, securing any necessary approvals and allocating and supervising the work undertaken by nominated contractors.In the last two years the amount spent in assisting Leeds residents has increased from £2.17m in 2004-5 to £3.75m at the end of March. Based on the number of applications currently being dealt with, the budget for 2007-8 has risen to £4.5m.

The level of Government support for 2007-8 will be £1.569m – equivalent to 35 per cent – leaving the council to find almost £3m. The council estimates that the cost of helping disabled residents in 2008-9 could reach £6m and has submitted an advance bid, asking the Government to meet its 60 per cent contributionFor information and help on disabled facilities grants call the Adaptations Agency on 0113 3957147 or email