Updating Your Home to Accommodate Your Disability
Government programs exist for veterans that have sustained a disability while serving that require in-home accommodation. There are four dominant grant programs developed in order to assist disabled veterans with required in-home altercations:
- The Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) grant
- The Special Home Adaption (SHA) grant
- The Temporary Residence Adaption (TRA) grant
- The Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) grant
Information about the application for these grants is covered in “Adaptive housing grants” in this chapter.
Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) Grant
The Specially Adapted Housing (SAH) Grant Program is designed to facilitate a degree of self-sufficiency for a home-bound veteran by providing an impediment-free surrounding. To qualify for this grant a veteran must have a service-related disability for the following:
- The loss or loss of use of both legs, being immobile and requiring braces, crutches, canes, or a wheelchair
- Blindness in both eyes, having only light perception capability, in addition to the loss or loss of use of one leg
- The loss or loss of use of one leg in addition to 1) residual organic disease or injury or 2) the loss or loss of use of one arm subsequently effecting balance or movement making it difficult to get around with the aid of braces, crutches, canes, or a wheelchair.
A residual effect or residuals are remaining aftereffects as a result of an injury or condition. If a condition calls for surgery and the resulting surgery effects the patients capacity to breathe, this constitutes a residual effect of the condition.
- The loss or loss of use of both arms at or above the elbow.
Altercations made to an existing home or the construction of an adaptive home are provided for under the SAH grant. This grant is limited to $60,000.
Special Home Adaptation (SHA) Grant
A veteran with a 100 percent disabled rating through a service-related disability for blindness or weathering anatomical loss or loss of use of both hands or arms below the elbow meets the requirements for the Special Home Adaptation (SHA) Grant of up to $12,000, if vision does not exceed 5/200 corrected with the aid of glasses.
The primary objective of the SHA is to support those in their homes with better flexibility.
Temporary Residence Adaptation (TRA) Grant
Those that qualify for the Temporary Residence Adaptation (TRA) Grant who are living with another family member provisionally are able to utilize a segment of their payment in changing the alternative home. Veterans can access up to $14,000 of the maximum SAH assistance or up to $2,000 of the maximum SHA assistance for this reason.
Home Improvements and Structural Alteration (HISA) Grant
Veterans with service-related disabilities and those with non-service-related disabilities are eligible to receive the Home Improvements and Structural Alterations (HISA) Grant. If a home requires upgrading in order to accommodate the extended treatment, including disability access to the home, or bathroom modifications, the HISA grant helps cover the expense.
A payment of up to $4,100 is provided for service-related disabilities whereas a payment of up to $1,200 is provided for non-service-related disabilities. A VA doctor determines whether modifications and structural improvements are required in order to maintain adequate, cost-effective treatment for an incapacity.