Getting in and out of your home or accessing businesses is something many may take for granted. However, many people in Alameda County use wheelchair ramps or home stair lifts to make life easier and safer.
Wheelchair ramps enable people who use wheelchairs to easily access their homes or other buildings. The slope of these ramps is important because certain angles are difficult to maneuver from a wheelchair. Wheelchair ramps take this into consideration in their design and installation.
On the same note, stairlifts have been nothing short of a miracle for individuals who have mobility problems. For individuals who have difficulty getting around the house, stair lifts are a much more practical and cost-effective solution to other home adaptations or moving to a single-level home.
Thanks to stairlifts, the elderly and disabled can stay in their own homes where the surroundings are familiar.
Home lifts and ramps companies in Alameda County, including the larger cities and surrounding areas of Oakland, Fremont, Hayward, Berkeley, and San Leandro, install, repair and maintain a variety of accessibility equipment for clients throughout the Greater Bay Area.
These products include stair, vertical platform and patient transfer lifts, overhead track systems, ramps, and more.
Tips for Researching Wheelchair Ramp and Home Lift Installers in Alameda County
A new home stair lift or ramp in Alameda County is a big purchase, so you don't want to rush into it.
Take the time to do the following:
- Be sure a stair lift or ramp is the right option for you. Research the pros and cons of residential care, employing home care, or moving to a single storey property first.
- Talk to others who own a stair lift in order to get feedback.
- Get a brochure from each company that has a reputation for safety and reliability so that you can learn more about the product.
- Visit the supplier showrooms and make an appointment for a home visit.
- Ask for a written estimate that includes all installation costs. Then compare the details across from each company.
What to Look for When Choosing Between Home Lifts and Ramps Companies
When choosing between home lifts and ramps companies in Alameda County, including the larger cities of Alameda, Union City, Pleasanton, Newark, and Dublin, there is more to consider than just price.
Keep the following factors in mind:
- Make sure that a home lift system has a smooth ride. Good quality models glide without any friction.
- Note the warranty period for the chair lifts. A 12 month warranty should be a minimum.
- Pay attention to whether there is a buy back scheme should the user pass away within a short time of purchasing a chair lift.
- Make sure to note the service and support that is available after installation.
- Chair lifts have weight limits. Be sure to ask about the weight limit of the chair lift you are interested in purchasing.
- Because installation can vary from 24 hours to several weeks, make sure you question the company of choice regarding when the chair lift can be installed.
- Ask about financial options. Some companies have flexible payment options, interest free credit, or "try before you buy" programs.
- If there is a power outage, be sure to ask if the stair lift will continue to operate.
Do You Want a Curved or Straight Stairlift?
There are two main types of stairlifts: straight and curved. Straight stairlifts are for stairs that have no bends or half-landings. They are the least expensive of the two types of lifts. However, if your stairs have any kind of bend, corner, or half-landing, you'll need a curved stairlift. This means that your stairlift will need to be custom-built for your staircase. It also means that once purchased, you will not be able to return it to the factory.
If you would like to stick to a straight lift but have a curved staircase, there is a slightly cheaper option. Two or more runs are installed with a bridging platform. The drawback to this setup is that it means having two lifts which means paying twice. It could also mean more maintenance costs as you will have the upkeep of two motors.
Budget Friendly Alternatives to Stair Lifts in Alameda County
Stair lifts that are made to order vary in price. The more complicated the stairs, the more costly the cost of the chair lift. But if your budget is tight, consider the following ideas to add up the savings:
Reconditioned Stair Lifts
Another option to consider is a reconditioned stairlift. Reconditioned stairlifts have been previously owned by someone else and then refurbished. They are practically as good as new and will usually give many years of service.
When you purchase a reconditioned stairlift, most of the lift is brand new. You will get a new seat, new rail, and a reconditioned engine which should be good for a few years. Typically the cost of a reconditioned stairlift will be approximately one-third of the price of a new stairlift.
Negotiate the Cost of Your New Stair Lift
Don't be afraid to ask the chair lift company to negotiate their price. Most mobility wheel chair companies want your business. A rule of thumb is plus or minus 10% of the initial price quote.
Rental Stairlifts in Alameda County
Many high quality companies offer a rental program. This is an ideal program for the elderly, especially those who rely on a monthly pension. There is usually an initial installation and set-up fee, but then you can rent a chair lift from as little as $90 per month.