Thinking of Installing an Elevator? Here’s What You Need to Know
For people with certain disabilities, those suffering from conditions such as arthritis, or those who use wheelchairs, one part of a house presents an insurmountable obstacle: stairs. If your home has multiple levels (think San Francisco, CA) and it is starting to become difficult or impossible to make it up the stairs, it is time to look for other solutions.
Many people, when they encounter this situation, have to restructure their lives to ensure that they can spend all their time on the lower level, often because they don’t know that there is another option. Others understand that there are steps you can take to alleviate the struggle of getting up the stairs, but think that it’s too expensive and give up on the idea. However, if you want to change the way that you move around your home, at least one option is definitely on the table: installing an elevator. Though many people get scared off by the seemingly high cost and the large nature of the project, in reality it can definitely be affordable for people of different incomes and backgrounds, and can be accomplished in a relatively short period of time.
So what can a home elevator do for you?
For starters, it can help people who are in wheelchairs move around their house by providing a moving platform that can get you up from a first to a second or even a third level, or down to the basement. Whether you have had an injury, an accident or are experiencing the effects of old age, an elevator can help alleviate the pain of getting up the stairs and can make you feel comfortable in your own home again. Furthermore, elevators actually increase the value of a home once they are installed – so you can actually reap the benefits of greater property values as a result of your investment.
What are your choices?
If you want to install an elevator in your home, you have a choice between a hydraulic and pneumatic elevator. The first option is generally larger and more expensive, but is also quieter and generally more popular. Hydraulic residential elevators are driven by a physical elevator arm that lifts people and objects up and down, and these elevators often have room for multiple passengers. Pneumatic elevators, meanwhile, are smaller and less expensive, and though they are less well-known they are slowly growing in popularity. They also have a glass exterior, which helps the home look more modern.
On average, installing an elevator requires an investment of at least $20,000, which includes the cost of the elevator cab and mechanism itself as well as installation.