Changes make Disabled Facilities Grants scheme more inclusive

Last Updated: 9 August 2022

9 August 2022

South Lakeland's Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG) scheme has been modified to make it even more inclusive.

The scheme helps pay for changes so people can stay living independently, with South Lakeland District Council undertaking eligible works up to a value of £30,000.

Subject to a test of financial resource, households may be asked to make a contribution but the level at which the means test will now be applied to mandatory grants has been increased from £5,000 to £10,000. Where the adaptation is for a child or young person there is no test of financial resource for the first £30,000.

SLDC's Cabinet was told that the cost of DFG work in the past six months, particularly for level-access showers, which account for about 80 per cent of DFG grants, had been exceeding £5,000.

Councillor Helen Chaffey, Portfolio Holder for Housing, said: "This is a response to increasing costs and a definite move on our part to make this worthwhile scheme which makes a real difference to people's quality of life more accessible.

"Increasing the means test threshold will cut down waiting times for applications and the start of work.”

Typical DFG adaptations are:

  • stair lifts
  • wet floor shower areas
  • access ramping

SLDC can help with the planning and design of the work along with Cumbria Social Services and health occupational therapists.

You can apply if you are:

  • registered or registerable as disabled (your social worker or occupational therapist can tell you this) and an owner-occupier or tenant. Social housing tenants may be able to get help from their housing association to adapt their homes;
  • acting on behalf of a person with disabilities who lives in your home;
  • a landlord acting on behalf of a tenant who has disabilities.

Councillor Suzie Pye, Portfolio Holder for Health, Wellbeing and Poverty Alleviation, said: "It is vitally important that this support is there for individuals who need it and that it is as accessible as possible. This change will remove any unnecessary delays which could cause inconvenience and suffering.

"I urge anyone who feels they could benefit from this scheme to have a look on our website and find out what is available and if they are eligible for this support."

For more information on the scheme, go to: https://www.southlakeland.gov.uk/housing/housing-support-and-grants/disabled-facilities-grants/

For advice and assessment from a county council occupational therapist if you live in South Lakeland, contact: 01539 713378/713343/713111/713334 or email kendalssd@cumbria.gov.uk