Disabled Facilities Grant
If you are a disabled Test Valley resident and you are experiencing difficulties in your home then grant-aid may be available to assist you to make your home more suitable for your needs.
- Do you find that getting in and out of a bath is a problem?
- Do you find climbing the stairs in the house is a problem?
- If you are a wheelchair user, do you find getting in and out of the house a problem?
These are typical situations where Test Valley Borough Council has been able to assist residents in the past.
If you feel that your home could be adapted to make life easier for you then please read on.
Grants are available to assist home owners, private tenants and Housing Association tenants.
Who decides whether I am eligible for grant-aid?
Grant-aid is only available for certain works as recommended by an Occupational Therapist.
If you are in receipt of a means-tested benefit such as Income Support. Guarantee Credit (This is a form of Pension Credit) or Income-related Employment and Support Allowance then grant-aid is likely to be available to fully fund the cost of the works.
Grant-aid is still available to those persons who do not receive one of the above benefits. If you are not in receipt of one of those benefits then it will be necessary to carry out a test of your financial resources to determine whether grant-aid is likely to be available. The test of financial resources would also indicate whether or not you would be likely to have to make a contribution towards the cost of the recommended works.
What sort of information is needed for the test?
A financial information form would be sent to you. Alternatively you can download and print a form at the bottom of the page, complete and return it to us.
The form asks for information about your financial circumstances. The information supplied by you is strictly confidential and will not be shared with anyone else. The information supplied in the form would be used to assess whether you would be eligible for grant-aid and, if you were likely to be eligible, it would indicate whether the works would be wholly or partly funded by the grant.
You will be advised as soon as possible after receipt of the form if you are likely to be eligible for grant aid (subject to the works being suitable)
Is help available to assist me to complete these forms?
Yes. Our caseworker can visit you in your home or discuss with you on the telephone in order to carry out the assessment for you.
I have some savings – will I still qualify for grant-aid?
The first £6000 of any savings is ignored. The fact that you may have savings above £6000 does not disqualify you from grant-aid.
What would happen if I am not eligible for grant-aid?
If grant-aid is not available then it may still be possible to find other funding that could assist you to afford the cost of the recommended works.
Is grant-aid available to assist with adapting my home for my disabled child?
Since 31st December 2005, it is no longer necessary for the parents of disabled children to undergo the test of financial resources. If the scheme of works is considered to be appropriate then it is likely that grant-aid would be available to fully fund the cost of the works.
Is there a limit to the amount of grant that is available?
The Disabled Facilities Grant has a limit of £30000.
What else is needed?
The disabled person will need to be assessed by an Occupational Therapist (OT) to determine their needs and assess if any adaptations are necessary for your property. Hampshire County Council have Occupational Therapists that can carry out this assessment. You should contact OT Direct on 0300 555 1378. Once the OT has carried out the assessment, if they think an adaptation is required they will make a referral to Test Valley Borough Council on your behalf.
If the required works are relatively small scale (eg. provision for a suitable handrail to assist client to climb steps at the front of the house) then that may be organised directly by Social Services.
Please note that if you are a Housing Association tenant, referrals may be made to your Housing Association in the first instance as they may be able to carry out the adaptation necessary.
Alternatively you can commission a private OT to carry out this assessment and send the report to Test Valley Borough Council.
I have been told that I am eligible for grant-aid – what happens next?
You will be visited by an officer from the Council’s Private Sector Housing Team. The aim of the visit is to prepare a schedule of the works that can be considered for grant-aid. The schedule would be used to obtain estimates of the cost of the proposed adaptations.
Please note that the works are not carried out by Test Valley Borough Council. For certain works we maintain a list of contactors who are experienced at carrying out these works at an agreed price. For other works, it would be necessary for you to employ a private contractor to carry out the work on your behalf. We would be available to advise and assist where possible. We will generally need quotes from two builders if you are obtaining your own estimates.
The schedule of grant works, application forms etc will then be sent to you. Help would be available to assist you to make your application for grant.
I have made my application for grant-aid and it has been approved – what happens next?
The contractor can be contacted and a start date agreed. Once the work has been completed satisfactorily, the grant will be paid normally directly to the contractor.
Grant aid will not be available if work has been completed before a grant is approved. You should not start any work until you have received confirmation of an approved grant.
I am a tenant, are there any special requirements?
Your landlord (whether it is a private landlord or a housing association) will be contacted to requested for the adaptation to take place. They will also have to agree that the intention is for you to be resident at that property for 5 years. If permission is refused, then Test valley Borough Council may assist you to find alternative accommodation through the Hampshire Homechoice system.
The above notes aim to provide basic information about the grants and loans that are available. If you would like more information then please do not hesitate to contact us.
For further information please contact the:
Private Sector Housing team
Tel 01264 368000