Top Tips in Getting Financial Help when Buying a Stairlift

Not everyone who has a stairlift installed for themselves or a relative do so directly from private companies. Here Ransome Mobility, who supply domestic stairlifts in Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Essex and our home county of Suffolk, look at the steps you should take if you want to get some support from your local council or housing association when buying a stairlift.


Arrange an Assessment

First of all, contact the local authority you pay your council tax to (this is usually the district council in England). Their social services department should be able to point you in the right direction.

If you are a housing association tenant, contact them directly and ask what arrangements they have in place. You will usually have to make an appointment for someone to visit your home and assess your specific needs. If you are a private tenant, you should get the landlord’s permission.


The Assessment Visit

The assessment will usually be carried out by an occupational therapist. They will ask you about your levels of mobility, any medical conditions, your individual needs, and whether any of these are likely to change in the future. They will also need to know how other people in the house will manage if a stairlift is installed.

It is not guaranteed that they will agree you need a stairlift; this is because there may be other avenues to explore. However, if a stairlift is the most appropriate option then the occupational therapist should be able to provide you with advice on funding.


The Funding

The financial arrangements vary between local authorities. Some councils lease their own stairlifts or have their own in stock which you can lease yourself – these are usually second-hand.

You can also apply for a Disability Facilities Grant of up to £30,000 in England. Elsewhere in the UK funding varies, especially in Scotland. You will also have to provide evidence of income and savings in order to qualify.

You may have to wait for a final decision. However, the maximum time between the initial inquiry and the stairlift being fitted should be no longer than six months. It is likely, though, that it will ultimately be your responsibility to contact the stairlift company, which is where Ransome Mobility come in.


Stairlifts and VAT

Stairlifts are VAT-free for the disabled or those who use a wheelchair. The current rules state that the stairlift (or wheelchair lift) must be ‘designed for use in connection with a wheelchair’, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the lift has to carry the person while they are seated in the wheelchair.

To make sure you don’t miss out on this VAT relief when buying a stairlift from us, follow this link, click on the download at the bottom of the page, then print out and fill in the form and send it to us.


Domestic Stairlifts in Hertfordshire from Ransome Mobility

You can, of course, contact us directly, particularly if you don’t think you will qualify for any grants and you would prefer not to wait. We supply many of the major brand names including HomeAdapt, Minivator and Access BDD stair lifts.

Call us on 0844 8569790 for a free, no-obligation consultation. We will assess what type you need (straight or curved) and what fits your condition and needs best. It can take just three days to fit a straight stairlift, while curved ones, as they are more complicated, can take between two and four weeks to be installed.

We also offer stairlift rental for customers across East Anglia which may be better if you only need it for a short period of time, such as while you are recovering from an operation.

To see our full range of stairlifts, follow this link.

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