5 Ways to Build Accessibility Into New Home Construction

Want more? Check out this article on Brad Bartko, founder of Disability: Accessibility by Design and learn about when accessibility should be considered in new home construction.

Are you thinking about building a new home? Are you thinking about living there for a long time? Read on to learn about important considerations your future-self will thank you for.


When building a custom home, “this is your chance to build something great”. The mentality of having a “forever home” can be achieved when it is built with accessibility in mind. As you age, you may not want to move out, if you still love your house. Planning for aging in place is prudent and will enhance the ROI of your custom home, especially if you can extend the number of years you get to enjoy living there.

Building an Accessible Home is Easier Than You Think

Building an accessible home, building or structure is easier than renovating later. Even the smallest considerations will be appreciated at some point. Not having to take things down to a structural level for modifications at a later date saves time, money and hassle.

Go above and beyond ‘the code’.

Why not design flush door thresholds, slightly wider hallways and pocket doors for smoother wheeling around and total clearance through doorways? An extra bedroom with en suite on the main floor, should in-home care be preferred in later years is always a welcome bonus.

Sensory Considerations

Many facing sensory issues and sensitivities may benefit from some square footage dedicated to sensory deprivation whether it be a tank or a dedicated room with extra soundproofing. Consider the placement of the home’s design on the lot and which rooms will have abundant light and at what point during the day; remember to consider what time of day rooms are used

Door Handles, Levers and Outlets

Adding lever style door handles instead of door knobs when choosing finishes means a door can be opened with a push down versus twisting motion. Having electrical outlets raised means easier access, for everyone.


Walk-in showers add a distinct touch of modern design while offering significant accessibility. As there are no transitions or enclosing walls or doors, entry and exit are made much safer and easier. Multiple and handheld shower heads make it easier for those who need to shower while seated. (Perhaps consider the “human car wash”, or Humanwash developed by Finnish engineer Matti Paaso.) A lower bathroom sink will be able to accommodate undercounter leg room for sitting and strategically placed grab bars can offer stability for getting on and off the toilet.


Bonus Tips:

Think about how technology can ease accessibility with voice-activated features for those who are unable to reach certain switches or equipment. Something as simple as a hydraulic dining room table can mean accommodating all guests with the greatest of ease. 


Ready to build your dream home? Get in touch and let’s get started today!