Disabled facilities grants
Mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant
You could receive a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant from us if you’re disabled and need to make changes to your home.
These changes may include:
- widening doors and installing ramps to make access into and out of your home easier
- improving access to rooms and facilities - for example, installing a stairlift to enable access to a bathroom and toilet facilities
- providing suitable bathing facilities – for example, a wet room
- providing a heating system suitable for your needs
- adapting heating or lighting controls to make them easier to use.
The grant is subject to:
- a needs assessment by an Occupational Therapist and consultation with Social Care Services
- a test of income and resources (means test). No means test is applicable when the work is for the benefit of a disabled child
- the change(s) being the most appropriate way to meet the person’s needs rather than an alternative, such as moving to new accommodation
- a maximum grant limit of £30,000.
Grants may be awarded to those living in owner-occupied, social or privately rented properties.
A contribution may be required towards the cost of the works. This will be determined by the means test. If your contribution is calculated to be higher than the cost of works, no grant will be awarded. You may however wish to continue with your application in case further work will be required in the future.
If your contribution is lower than the cost of the works, the grant awarded will be calculated by taking your contribution from the cost of the works.
If you do not have to find a contribution, you will receive a grant to meet the full cost of the eligible works (subject to the maximum grant limit of £30,000).
Where a disabled person and their partner are in receipt of any of the following, they will not need to make a contribution:
- income-based ESA
- Universal Credit
- pension guarantee credit
- housing benefit
- tax credits with an income of less than £15,050
- income-based job seeker's allowance
- Council Tax Support (over and above the 25% single occupancy discount).
When applying for a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant you will be asked to sign a Certificate of Future Occupation stating that throughout the grant condition period you intend to occupy the property as your only or main residence.
A breach of the conditions may mean that the grant must be repaid.
The grant condition period lasts for:
- 5 years - if the amount of grant assistance is £4,999 or less
- 10 years - if the amount of grant assistance is £5,000 or more.
If the grant amount is for a sum of £5,000 or over the council may demand repayment of the part of the grant that exceeds £5,000 but may not demand an amount in excess of £10,000.
Should the works require any of the following, the grant cannot be approved until these applications have received approval:
- planning permission
- building regulation approval
- listed building consent.
Where the applicant is a tenant, the landlords written consent will be required prior to the undertaking of the eligible works.
No work should be started until your grant has been approved. The grant will not be made available for any works that have already started or been completed.
How to apply
You will require an assessment by an Occupational Therapist employed by Suffolk County Council. To register for an assessment please contact Suffolk County Council by email at ILS@suffolk.gov.uk or by phone on 0800 121 7711.
The person requiring any adaptation must be registered (or able to be registered as) disabled to apply for a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant.
Discretionary disabled facilities grants
West Suffolk Council has introduced discretionary disabled facilities grants to help our residents live independently within their home.
- Fast-track Minor Adaptions Grant: to provide non-means tested, financial assistance for adaptations in the home, to help a vulnerable person to be discharged from hospital, to help reduce an occupier’s need for a hospital admission, or, if under hospice care, to be cared for at home. In addition, to provide people living with dementia, essential aids and adaptations to enable them to live as independently as possible. The maximum grant is £7,500 and is not subject to any conditions following completion of the works. The recommended works must be supported by an Occupational Therapist, adult social care, hospital admittance or discharge team or other health care professional who has a direct knowledge of the applicant’s health condition.
- Disabled Facilities Grant - Relocation: to assist an applicant eligible for a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant to move to a property that is within the West Suffolk Council area, and is either adapted to meet their needs or is capable of being adapted, and where it is not reasonable or practicable to undertake the adaptations required at their existing home. The new property must be one that has been assessed by an OT as already meeting the needs of the disabled person, or capable of meeting the needs, by adapting at a reasonable cost. The maximum grant is £10,000 and where the applicant has a qualifying owner’s interest the grant costs will be registered as a Charge on HM Land Charges Register, from the certified date. Repayment of the grant, in full, will be required if the property is disposed of (whether by sale, assignment, transfer or otherwise).
- Disabled Facilities Grant – Top-up: to assist an applicant who is eligible for a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant where the cost of the eligible works exceeds the maximum DFG of £30,000 and they are unable to finance the additional costs. The applicant (not the relevant person) will be means tested as in accordance with mandatory DFG. The maximum grant is £10,000 and where the applicant has a qualifying owner’s interest the grant costs will be registered as a Charge on HM Land Charges Register, from the certified date. Repayment of the grant, in full, will be required if the property is disposed of (whether by sale, assignment, transfer or otherwise).
- Disabled Facilities Grant – Financial Assistance: to provide financial assistance where an applicant is eligible for a mandatory Disabled Facilities Grant but have insufficient capital to fund their contribution towards the cost of the works that are eligible for a mandatory DFG, following the means test. The maximum grant is £40,000, made up of £30,000 mandatory DFG and £10,000 Top-up grant. Where the applicant has a qualifying owner’s interest the grant costs will be registered as a Charge on HM Land Charges Register, from the certified date. Repayment of the grant, in full, will be required if the property is disposed of (whether by sale, assignment, transfer or otherwise).
Further information about the grants provided by West Suffolk Council is available in our Housing Assistance Policy under the Regulatory Reform Order 2021-2026.
Please see guidance on how to apply for and manage a mandatory or discretionary grant.
If you are unsure whether you could receive help, then please telephone 01284 757036 or email HIA@westsuffolk.gov.uk.