Housing assistance policy
Appendix 2 - discretionary disabled facilities grants
The purposes for which adaptation must be provided are set out in section 23 of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 as amended, and are:
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to and from the dwelling or the building in which the dwelling or, as the case may be, flat is situated; including facilitating access to and from a garden by a disabled occupant and making access to a garden safe for a disabled occupant
- making the dwelling or building safe for the disabled occupant and other persons residing with him/her
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to a room used or usable as the principal family room
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to, or providing for the disabled occupant, a room used or usable for sleeping
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to, or providing for the disabled occupant, a room in which there is a lavatory, or facilitating the use by the disabled occupant of such a facility
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to, or providing for the disabled occupant, a room in which there is a bath or shower (or both), or facilitating the use by the disabled occupant of such a facility
- facilitating access by the disabled occupant to, or providing for the disabled occupant, a room in which there is a hand-wash basin, or facilitating the use by the disabled occupant of such a facility
- facilitating the preparation and cooking of food by the disabled occupant
- improving any heating system in the dwelling to meet the needs of the disabled occupant or, if there is no existing heating system in the dwelling or any such system is unsuitable for use by the disabled occupant, providing a heating system suitable to meet his/her needs
- facilitating the use by the disabled occupant of a source of power, light or heat by altering the position of one or more means of access to or control of that source or by providing additional means of control
- facilitating access and movement by the disabled occupant around the dwelling in order to enable him/her to care for a person who is normally resident in the dwelling and is in need of such care
- such other purposes as may be specified by order of the Secretary of State
Necessary and appropriate
Works must be identified as necessary and appropriate by an occupational therapist or trusted assessor. Their report should include an analysis of options and justifications for the eligible works. These works must meet the eligibility criteria set out in grants legislation and be the simplest, most straightforward and cost effective means to meet the need taking into account all available space and facilitates within the property.
Reasonable and practicable
Works must be reasonable and practicable having regard to the age and condition of the property.
The maximum amount of assistance is set out in the Disabled Facilities Grants (Maximum Amounts and Additional Purposes) (England) Order 2008. This is currently £30,000.
Applicants will be assessed for their ability to contribute to the cost of the works in accordance with the Housing Renewal Grant Regulations 1998 (as amended) or any subsequent act or amendment.
If the cost of adaptations is likely to exceed £30,000 or in any case where rehousing is considered a viable option this should be fully explored before recommending works.
Successive grant applications can be made to meet different or substantially altered needs that have not been addressed through a previous application.
Repayment of assistance
We will require that any grant amount over £5000 given to a qualifying owner is repaid up to a maximum repayment of £10,000 if the recipient disposes of, (whether by sale, assignment, transfers or otherwise) the premises in respect of which the grant was given within 10 years of the certified date, providing that:
- the recipient of the grant would not suffer excessive financial hardship were they required to repay all or any of the grant
- the disposal of the premises was not to enable the recipient of the grant to take up employment, or to change the location of his employment
- the disposal was not made for reasons connected with the physical or mental health or well-being of the recipient of the grant or of a disabled occupant of the premises
- the disposal was not made to enable the recipient of the grant to live with, or near, any person who is disabled or infirm and in need of care, which the recipient of the grant is intending to provide, or who is intending to provide care of which the recipient of the grant is in need by reason of disability or infirmity
- we are satisfied that it is reasonable in all the circumstances to require the repayment.
The condition requiring repayment will be a local land charge and will be binding on any person who is for the time being an owner of the dwelling or building
Terms and conditions
The Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 lays down legal requirements for mandatory DFGs and the application and payment processes.