3 Things You Shouldn’t Compromise on When Looking for an Accessible Home

House-hunting, when you have special needs, can be a challenge, but not an insurmountable one. You do, in fact, have to contend with fewer options when it comes to accessibility-ready homes, but you can also broaden your search by making compromises here and there and being open to having the accessibility modifications you need to do yourself. In many ways, this may even work in your favor, as you could be eligible for home improvement grants.

Indeed, there’s no question that the right accessible home for you is out there somewhere —  you just need to look for it and recognize it for what it is. So, whether you’re looking for fully adapted home features or looking to add them yourself or even both, here are some of the areas that you shouldn’t compromise on.

The Bathroom

There’s no question that the bathroom is an integral part of our day-to-day minutiae, so it’s only apt to give it a great deal of our focus when looking for an accessible home. This is because there is a lot of shifting and moving in the bathroom, which can be quite challenging for those who have mobility issues if there’s a lack of assistive fixtures. Moreover, the use of water also makes this an area that’s prone to slips and falls, which just won’t do.

It is for these reasons that the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) has put in place standards on what makes for a good accessible bathroom layout. Fundamentally, this will involve the presence of grab bars near the toilet, by the tub and shower, and close to the sink. Furthermore, great pains must be taken to make the floor a non-slip one, while curbs are highly discouraged to help eliminate potential fall hazards. It’s also ideal to raise the toilet to a recommended height and install a foldable shower seat.

The Kitchen

Not too far behind in terms of functionality is, of course, the kitchen. If you’re wheelchair-bound or have other types of disabilities, a standard kitchen will inevitably be a difficult place for you to navigate, let alone actually prepare food in. Again, the ADA has put forth requirements on what makes a kitchen a fully accessible one.

In a nutshell, an accessible kitchen will have countertops (and other work surfaces like the sink and cooktop) that are considerably lower for easy access to those who spend their lives on wheelchairs. Moreover, there must be adequate leg space beneath them for the same reason. Even fixtures like knobs, faucets, and valves must be ADA-compliant, while there must be plenty of clearance to open appliances and move around in the kitchen.


Lastly, don’t forget to consider the house’s flooring. This is extremely important when you use a mobility aid like a wheelchair or walker as some surfaces can be hard to move on, such as carpeting. However, if you encounter a home that has less-than-ideal flooring, don’t write it off, just yet, especially when it has potential, as it’s a simple enough solution to modify it.

Consider adding wood flooring that not only offers ease in moving around but is also a joy to clean and maintain and adds great value to the house. Such a project will cost at least around $2,500, depending on the kind of wood you choose — with engineered and exotic hardwoods costing more than pine and bamboo variants. You will also need to factor in additional labor costs if furniture needs to be removed or if you need the existing flooring repaired. Add these potential costs to the home’s value, and you’ll have a good idea of whether it’s a sound investment.

Suffice it to say, the only way to guarantee that you end up with the accessible home you had in mind is to manage your expectations and really put your heart into the search. After all, this will likely be your forever home, so the attention is duly deserved. Best of luck on the hunt!

Photo via Pexels.com

Bryce Washum
Selling a House With Foundation Issues

Selling a house is hard work. More so, if the house is structurally unsound!

Selling a home needing foundation repair, for example, requires extra steps and considerations. No homebuyer wants to hear “foundation problems” when home searching. After all, the foundation is the base of the home.

When the foundation is not working properly, everything it supports is put to risk. On the other hand, when it’s strong, it does more than just hold the home above the ground. It resists movement of the soil beneath it, insulates against the cold, and keeps out the moisture.

If your home has a foundation issue, the real question then becomes – is it still possible to sell it? The short answer is – of course, it’s possible. But, unlike a structurally sound home, you’ll have to make some few considerations.

In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to learn about selling a house with foundation issues. After years in the business, Jim Oursler of Granite Foundation Repair, a professional foundation repair company in Dallas, has a lot to say on the topic. Let’s get started, shall we?

Understand the Problem at Hand

People have many misconceptions when it comes to foundation problems. In most cases, people assume that the “foundation” itself is the problem. Granted, in a few cases, the concrete may be the problem.

In such cases, the mix used to construct the foundation may have had too much water or salty sand.

But, in the majority of cases, foundation problems arise from settling. And, that brings us to this question – what is foundation settling? Foundation settling occurs when the weight of a home settles into the ground below.

Since foundation settling occurs unevenly, one part of the home will sink more than the other. When this happens, foundation failure is inevitable. You may begin noticing some of the following signs.

  • Floors can begin to slant as part of the home begins to gradually settle into the ground.
  • Water pipes throughout your home may become twisted.
  • Over time, you may begin experiencing serious plumbing leaks.
  • Cracks may begin to appear.

However, cracks may appear for other reasons apart from settling issues. The only way to find its exact cause is to seek professional foundation repair services.

  • Gaps between window frames and walls may begin to appear.
  • It may become increasingly difficult to open and close the doors and windows.
  • Wood planks in your flooring may start becoming ajar.

If you notice any of these problems, call a foundation repair company as soon as possible. With foundation problems, the quicker you act the better. Left unattended, the problems will only worsen.

At worst, your home could become a safety risk. Uneven floors, in particular, could pose a safety risk to little tots and the elderly.

Options when Selling a House with Foundation Issues

After getting your home’s foundation assessed, the next step is to understand the options before you think about selling the home.

Generally speaking, two options exist. One is to try to sell the home as-is, that is, with its foundation issues. And two, to fix the issues and then sell the home.

With that in mind, let’s now examine the two options at hand more closely.

Option #1: Selling the home with its foundation problems.

If you don’t have the budget to fix the issues or need cash quickly, this may be your best option. For investment property buyers, this may present a great opportunity to add value. Such buyers may make the necessary repairs and then flip the property for a decent profit.

For other buyers, though, the words “foundation repairs” are akin to “money pit.”

But even for a buyer not afraid of renovations, securing financing may present a new headache. Lenders like HUD and VA usually only finance homes that are structurally sound.

Option #2: Fixing the issues and then selling the home.

If you decide to go with this option, then you’ll need to find a good foundation repair company. When interviewing the experts, ask them these important questions:

  • How do your prices compare to others in the city?
  • Do you have any references and testimonials?
  • Do you offer warranty for services offered?
  • Are you duly licensed and insured?
  • How long have you been in the industry?
  • What is your assessment of the damage?

Once you get one, have your home inspected immediately. Roughly speaking, a foundation assessment report will cost you about $500.

Expect to pay between $5,000 and $10,000 if your foundation requires new support piers or anchor bolts. If, however, the repairs required are extensive, then costs can quickly escalate to up to $40,000.

With your foundation now in good shape, buyers may be less weary to put an offer. Furthermore, your home will now attract a better market price.

Whichever option you choose, selling a house with foundation issues is possible. There is a buyer out there for every house. You only need to set realistic expectations and do your research.

Do You Really Need a Realtor to Sell Your House?

Many people believe that by law, they need a real estate agent to sell their home or property, but no law exists requiring that a person hire a realtor to sell their home. Except in some states, they require homeowners to hire an agent to handle all the paperwork regarding the closing of the house. But, selling a house on your own can be done.


There are advantages and disadvantages for selling your own home. An advantage is that if you decide to sell your own house, you will be able to receive more money from the sale of your home because you will not be paying a realtor’s commission. The disadvantage, though, is that you are fully responsible for knowing all the laws, steps, and requirements for selling your own home, and sometimes that can be a lot to handle.


Steps to selling your home by yourself


First, if you decide to sell your house on your own, you are taking part in “For Sale By Owner” which can be a great way to get the full sale price of your home without paying all of the commission fees. But before you can get started, it’s important to do some research on the market in the area you live in. Is is a buyer’s market? If so, taking on the task of selling your own home may be difficult because you are going against real estate agents who know what they are doing, and dedicate their whole work life to selling homes. Whereas you will have to figure out how you are going to balance your life, job, and selling your house on your own. To eliminate stress, don’t sell when there is a buyer’s market, but sell when there is a seller’s market.


Legal considerations


Remember that before you sell your home, there are legal factors that have to be considered. First, you will need to learn about the laws of your state that have control over real estate transfers. By knowing the laws, you can then find out what kinds of paperwork need to be filled out. You will also need to find out if there any encumbrances that are on your home and then from there, figure out how to handle them. In some states, but not all, there are mandatory disclosure laws that need to be followed, and you will be required to list off certain characteristics of your home.


Listing your home


One of the best ways to market your home is posting your listing online. There are multiple websites that specialize in helping you sell your home, and it would make the process a little bit easier and faster too.


The best way to market your house is getting it listed on MSL (Multiple Listing Services). This website is nationwide and lists homes for sale that can be searched according to area.


If you are willing to put in the time in effort in order to receive full sale price of your home, hiring a realtor is not necessary. With proper research and preparation, you can sell your home all on your own.

Real Estate Investing Doesn’t Discriminate

Real estate investment is a business of putting money into something, like a property, owning it, managing it, and hopefully making a profit in return.


This is a business that requires a lot of time, dedication, patience, and organization. The great thing about real estate investment is that it doesn’t discriminate. Many people call it a business of “monopoly” and you just have to be conscious about how you spend/sanction the money you are putting to work. If successful, real estate investment can generate large profits for investors while greatly benefiting all other parties.


Being a real estate investor is an inclusive business. Technically, it doesn’t require a person to have a degree but rather experience, creativity and a sharp mind. Dianet Franco (FortuneBuilders) is an investor in Pearland, Texas. She was born in Mexico and moved to the U.S. at the age of four. She was married at the age of 14 with only a sixth grade education, but that didn’t stop her from wanting to make a living for herself.


Franco’s drive and passion lead her to become a very successful real estate investor and a great example for people who may not believe they have anything to give. With practice, this business can be mastered, and the outcome is rewarding.


Source: Dianet Franco