Disabled Facilities Grant
We provide Disabled Facilities Grants with the assistance of Kent County Council’s Occupational Therapy (OT) Service and ‘In Touch’, the Dover Home Improvement Agency.
The means tested scheme is open to all residents within the district. A grant is available to anyone with a physical, mental or sensory disability and can be used to adapt your home so that you or a family member can live more independently.
During the application process, and if a grant is given, you will receive help from a number of organisations:
- An Occupational Therapist will help you to determine the best adaptation and equipment
- the Home Improvement Agency can provide technical assistance, managing the contractors and workmen
- we will provide and manage the funding
Who can apply?
To apply you must be either the owner of a home or the tenant. There is no restriction on the type of tenancy but we will need to contact the landlord and seek their permission for the work to be carried out. The landlord can also apply on your behalf. In order to protect public funds the landlord will be asked to sign a certificate.
If you are a Council tenant you are still eligible for a Disabled Facilities Grant but this work is normally funded through our Adaptations Officer, tel: 01304 872062.
If you or your partner is in receipt of, or is entitled to, one of the following benefits you will receive a 100% grant:
- Income Support
- Guaranteed Pensions Credit
- Income-based Job Seeker’s Allowance
- Housing Benefit
- Tax Credit for those on low income
Adaptations for the benefit of children and young persons (up to and including 18 years old) may receive a 100% grant.
The maximum grant available is £30,000 minus any personal contribution, for those works considered eligible.
We may place a charge on the adapted property of owner occupiers where the grant exceeds £5,000. The charge is limited to a maximum of £10,000 and will only be effective if the property is sold within ten years from completion of the works. The charge is discretionary and will be determined on a ‘case-by-case basis’ reflecting the ‘individual circumstances of each applicant’ at the time of sale with issues of hardship etc taken into account
What types of work are covered by the scheme?
The grants can be used to assist anyone with a physical, mental or sensory disability.
- To make it easier to get in or out of your home, doorways could be widened or ramps installed.
- To provide safety and security and supporting independence, a room or space could be made where it is safe to leave a disabled person unattended.
- To improve access to the room or part of the home a stairlift could be installed if you cannot manage the stairs.
- To improve or provide a heating system suitable for the needs of the disabled person.
- To adapt heating or lighting controls to make them easier to use.
- To provide alternative bathing facilities if you cannot use your bath.
- To improve access and movement around the home so that the disabled person may provide support or care for someone else who lives in the home.
How does the application process work?
We spend around £600,000 a year on Disabled Facilities Grants, but there is a priority waiting list.
If you would like to make an initial enquiry for a grant please contact the Private Sector Housing Team on 01304 872397.
When applying for a grant you should expect the following steps:
- You will be referred to the Occupational Therapist who will make an assessment of need
- The Occupational Therapist will then make a recommendation to us who will ask you to complete a financial assessment form
- Our Grant Officer will make a financial assessment and advise you of your likely contribution
- The Grant Officer will visit you and assess the urgency of your need so that we can determine your priority compared to other applicants
- We will then write to you with a grant offer together with an application form for completion
How long might I have to wait?
We have no waiting times for a grant but we do require the KCC Occupational Therapist's recommendation to offer of assistance and an application for assistance with estimates.
How is the building work managed?
Once a completed application is received it will be evaluated and approved. Work cannot start until the grant has been approved by us in writing. If you start the work before approval you may lose the grant.
It is possible to manage the process yourself but we would strongly recommend that you employ a surveyor or the Home Improvement Agency to manage the work. We will need two written quotes or estimates for the work and would recommend that the work is done by a builder who belongs to a trade organisation which operates a guarantee scheme.
The fees charged by a surveyor or the Home Improvement Agency can be paid as part of the grant.
The work must be completed within one year of approval and will be inspected by the our Officer, both for quality and for compliance with the recommendations of the Occupational Therapist.
For more information
For more information about the grant contact the Private Sector Housing Team on 01304 872 397.
If you wish to make an application you should first contact Kent County Council’s Occupational Therapy Service on 03000 41 61 61.
If you find the process of adapting your home too daunting you might wish to consider moving to another home. Most landlords will give priority to tenants wishing to move because of a disability issue and would normally look favourably on applications where adaptation is difficult or impossible. In the first instance please contact your landlord or our Adaptation Team for advice.
If you are an owner/occupier a Relocation Grant or Loan my be available to help you move to a more suitable property.
Contact Private Sector Housing
Tel: 01304 872 397