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Housing Assistance Policy

Appendix 1: Disabled Facilities Grant (Part 1-2)

1.     Regulatory Framework

The Council will provide Disabled Facilities Grants in accordance with the provisions of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 (The Act) as amended and associated legislation and guidance including:

  • The Regulatory Reform (Housing Assistance) (England and Wales) Order 2002 ("The RRO")
  • Housing Renewal Grants Regulations 1996 as amended
  • The Disabled Facilities Grants (Conditions Relating to Approval or Payment of Grant) General Consent 2008 ("The 2008 General Consent")
  • The Disabled Facilities Grants (Maximum Amounts and Additional Purposes) (England) Order 2008

2.     Eligibility for Grant Work

Legislation states that work for Disabled Facilities Grant must be "reasonable and practicable". It gives Councils flexibility to define the works acceptable to meet local needs. The legislation also states the eligibility criteria for those in receipt of the grant

National legislation sets out the following:-

  • The government sets the maximum grant available which is set at £30,000 inclusive of all charges and fees.
  • All applications will be subject to a test of financial resources as set out in the provisions of legislation.
  • The test will determine what amount, if any, the disabled occupants will have to contribute to the cost of the works.
  • Where the adaptation is for a child or a young person there is no test of financial resource.

A person must be referred through the Occupational Therapist to be considered for a Disabled Facilities Grant.

2.1 Local Eligible Works

The legislation states that works undertaken must be "reasonable and practicable". This will be determined by the Council. Eligible work will provide for one or more of the following purposes:

  • To assist entry and exit from the property
  • To aid access into and around the living areas, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom
  • To improve or provide heating and/or light controls
  • To make the dwelling safe for the disabled occupant and other person residing with him/her
  • To provide access to and from the garden by a disabled occupant

Grants are available for removable items such as stair lifts and through floor lifts across all tenures, in conjunction with services offered by Lancashire County Council (LCC)

2.2 Local Ineligible Works

Grant will not normally be approved for certain types of works including the following:

  • Provision of driveway for vehicles car port, garage, shed, storage for mobility scooters
  • Provision of fitments in rooms eg built in wardrobes, storage units, cupboards etc
  • Service contracts and insurance for lifts and other equipment
  • Provision of new floor coverings or replacement of existing floor coverings
  • Provision of clothes drying facilities
  • Provision of fixed or moveable changing tables
  • Provision of treatment rooms or space for treatments
  • Landscaping of garden or provision of access path or hard standing areas within garden
  • Provision of external lighting
  • Formation of bin storage area
  • Provision or repair of garden fences and boundary walls

2.3 Local Grant Assistance

Applicants are responsible for ensuring that they are able to fund their own contribution towards the cost of the works before a grant will be approved by the Council.

Grant will not be approved for any works which have been commenced before an application is approved.

Applications for additional grants within a three year period will not be accepted with the exception of Disabled Facilities Grants.

Where architect or other fees are incurred in the submission of any grant application these will not be paid if the grant application is not approved.

The Council will not normally consider any extensions to a property where the existing footprint or layout of the dwelling, including outbuildings and garages, can be adapted or converted to accommodate the facilities required.

In all cases, including any extension, the Council will normally only fund the most cost effective and least disruptive works that meet the applicant's requirements.

Where an applicant has a preference or aspiration for work that is over and above those recommended or considered reasonable the applicant will be required to fund any additional costs themselves.

A scheme of adaptations must, in general terms, be reasonable, taking into account costs, building regulations and planning permission and the practicability of carrying out the works.

Where a scheme involves substantial structural alterations or extensions, officers should consider re-housing the applicant as an alternative where and if more suitable accommodation is available. The Council will seek to ensure that Housing Associations optimise the use of their stock in this way and offer priority to finding a more suitable property.


2.4 Local Conditions re Repayment of Grant

In accordance with the provisions of "The 2008 General Consent", the Council may require repayment of a portion of the grant if the property is disposed of within 10 years of the certified date of completion by sale, transfer or agreement. This condition applies only where the grant recipient has an owner's interest in the property.

The amount that may be recovered is the amount of grant paid above £5000 up to a maximum of £10,000. Eg with a grant of £7500 the amount that may be recovered is £2500

In determining whether to reclaim an amount of grant the Council will take into consideration all relevant statutory provisions and the individual circumstances of each case.

The conditions for recovery of grant will be recorded as a Local Land Charge and will be binding on any person who for the time being is an owner of the property.

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