After a spinal cord injury, a family will often have an immediate need for a fully accessible bed and bath suite at home. Most families may not have the resources or the time to build an entirely new home or economically remodel the existing interior, but there are a number of reasons why an accessible addition may be a superior alternative.

Benefits of a Home Addition Over a Home Remodel/Modification Include:

home addition for SCI• Bed and bath activity areas can be designed to suit the needs of the individual with SCI/D and those of the caregiver(s).

• Doorway connections can be created, eliminating hallways.

• Space can be designed for required lift types.

• Structural supports for a ceiling lift will be more cost effective and practical.

• Pocket doors, hardware and vanities with knee space can be created per your specific needs.

• Curb-less showers and wet rooms are easier to create.

• Fewer in-home interruptions can benefit recovery and rehabilitation.

• A separate entry door keeps assistants from walking through the house.

• Separate zoned HVAC is possible with point of use water heaters.

• Grab bars, wall hung toilets with footrest clearance are easily included.

• Natural views and landscaping can enhance views, creating a soothing inside-outside connection.


Construction Benefit of an Addition Can Include:

addition for SCI• New plumbing with larger pipes will remove shower water faster than in older homes.

• Modifying an existing window into a door passage minimizes damage to the existing home thus avoiding additional repairs.

• An addition keeps the existing home cleaner and quieter inside.


Charles M. Schwab is an architect who has specialized in fully accessible and universally design homes for over 20 years. His website is