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Barrier-free entry: Easy come, easy go


For those with limited mobility, moving about the house is made easier when transitions are seamless.

Bertie_on_porch_opt A single step can make it impossible for a person in a wheelchair to enter a house, or a room. Even a person using a walker, or who is simply unsteady on her feet, will move more easily and feel safer with floors and walkways that flow smoothly one into another.

It is important to provide at least one entry door without steps, and when building a house, it is often possible to provide a barrier-free entry without resorting to a special ramp, as seen in the front entry above.

low_threshold_opt Wheelchair-accessible thresholds needn't let in the cold or the rain. A minimal threshold as seen at right keeps the weather out without impeding a wheelchair or tripping


door handleDoors should be 36 inches wide, with offset hinges to allow the door to open fully. And while you're at it, install easy-to-operate door handles rather than knobs or levers that must be squeezed with the thumb.



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