Disabled adaptations

What is an adaptation?

If you are disabled, there may be physical barriers that make it difficult for you to carry out ordinary day to day activities. An adaptation to your home will enable you to move around your home and access and use its facilties more easily. An adaptation will also make it easier for your carers to look after you.

Typical adaptations include:

  • Stair lifts and through floor lifts
  • Ramps, rails and step lifts
  • Door widening for wheelchair access
  • Adapting kitchens by providing low level units
  • Level access showers and other bathroom alterations
  • Improving heating

In some cases, only minor alterations are needed, for example grab rails, hand rails or lever taps. You should request this when you first request an assessment by an occupational therapist.

How can we help?

To apply for adaptations to your home, you will first need to arrange for an assessment by an Occupational Therapist / Aide (OT/ OTA).

To arrange this, contact us on the numbers at the bottom of this page depending whether the disabled person is an adult or child.

The OT/ OTA will meet you at the Assessment centre (or home if you cannot get to the Assessment Centre) to assess your needs and if applicable, they will refer you to the Accessible Homes Team.

Adaptations for council tenants, major or minor adaptations

The occupational therapist makes a referral to Accessible Homes and the process then depends on whether the works cost more than £1,000 or not.

They will then undertake a financial assessment and will advise you whether you are likely to have a contribution to pay towards the adaptations.

If you wish to proceed you will, in due course, be invited to make a formal grant application.

Please note: A further waiting list is held by Accessible Homes and your referral will be dealt with in priority and date order. You will be advised of the likely timescale once the team has received the referral from your OT/OTA.

Disabled Adaptations for owner occupiers and tenants

If you are an owner or a tenant of a landlord other than the city council, and if you or someone living with you has mobility or health problems, you may qualify for a grant towards the cost of providing adaptations and facilities to enable that person to continue to live there.

If the grant does not cover the full cost, a low cost loan may be available to meet the difference.


The Disabled Facilities Grant is a mandatory grant to help adapt the home of disabled or older residents so that they can continue to live independently in their own home. 

See the  Financial Assistance Schedule (revised January 2015) (pdf, 0.6 MB) (opens new window)  for details of grant products available under our current policy.

Financial help

For most homeowners enquiries for financial help from us are administered by WE Care and Repair and in line with the  Financial Assistance Schedule (revised January 2015) (pdf, 0.6 MB) (opens new window)  This help is in the form of a low cost loan.

We have a range of affordable products available to suit the financial circumstances of eligible households and the term can be extended up to 15 years to make repayment as low as possible.

In some exceptional circumstances we might accept interest only loans or deferred payments as long as there is equity in your property to adequately cover the capital value of the loan.

All loans are secured against your property and your home is at risk if you do not keep up repayments as agreed.

To make an enquiry contact WE Care and Repair on 0300 323 0700 or by email  info@wecr.org.uk. Help offered under this policy is limited to the budget available at the time of your application.

See the  WE Care and Repair website for more information about this and other services.

All our low cost loans are administered by our partner  Wessex Home Improvement Loans.

The Private Housing Service deals directly with enquiries for loans for specialist areas of work like:

  • energy efficiency improvements
  • bringing empty properties back into use
  • loans to private landlords in areas where Discretionary Licensing Schemes have been designated.

Please call or email if you wish to make an enquiry about these schemes.

Further information

Further information on the range of help can be found in three leaflets:

Contact us

Care Direct for disabled adults:

Telephone: 0117 922 2700
Fax: 0117 903 6688
Email to adult.care@bristol.gov.uk

For disabled children contact the Children and Young Peoples Services:

Telephone: 0117 903 8250
Fax: 903 8254
Minicom: 0117 903 3825
Email to disabledchildren@bristol.gov.uk

Other organisations who can help

West of England Care and Repair
5 Hide Market,
Waterloo Street, St. Phillips,
Bristol BS2 0BH
Tel: 0117 954 2222
Fax: 0117 954 1717
Email: info@wecr.org.uk
Website: www.wecr.org.uk

Age UK (formerly Help The Aged) / Age Concern
Canningford House,
38 Victoria Street,
Bristol BS1 6BY
Tel: 0117 929 7537 or Freephone Age UK 0800 169 6565
Email: admin@ageukbristol.org.uk
Website: www.ageuk.org.uk/bristol

Living DLC (previously the Disabled Living Centre)
The Vassall Centre,
Gill Avenue,
Bristol BS16 2QQ,
Tel / minicom: 0117 965 3651,
Fax: 0117 965 3652,
Email: info@thisisliving.org.uk
Website: www.thisisliving.org.uk