While there are plenty of options, the two most common are the stairchair and in-home elevator.
Deciding between the two is not easy because each has their advantages and disadvantages. In the end, it comes down to your mobility needs and assessing the benefits of each to decide which will help you enjoy every level of your home.
Addressing the Stairchair: Pros and Cons to Consider
A stairchair is cost-effective, and it allows you to move up and down the stairs without climbing a single step. Instead, the stairchair is affixed to a rail system. You sit on the chair, and the chair follows the rails up the side of your staircase to the next level.
The Benefits of a Stairchair
- Limited Remodeling: A stairchair is installed with a rail along the wall, a chair and possibly an electrical outlet. You do not have to retrofit your entire home to accommodate it.
- Design Options: There are design options with a stair lift so that you can pick a chair, rail color, and design that suits the style of your home and does not create an eyesore.
- Fast Installation: Most stair chairs are installed in one day, and the process is relatively quick.
The Disadvantages of a Stairchair
- Access at the Top is Limited: If you rely on a wheelchair or walker to assist you with getting around, you would need one on both levels, because you cannot carry a wheelchair or walker up on the stairchair.
- Extra Costs: The complexity of your staircase may increase the cost of your stairchair. Curved or ornate staircases often require customized rail systems, which obviously cost more.
Examining the In-Home Elevator: What Advantages and Disadvantages are There?
An in-home elevator is a much bigger project, but it could add value and style to your home if it is done properly.
The Benefits of an In-Home Elevator
- Adds Value: An in-home elevator has one significant advantage over the stairchair, and that is the value. Any home with an elevator will have more value than a home without one.
- Customized to Your Home: In-home elevators can be customized to your home’s design, and the cab can have aesthetics that match your home’s existing décor, which in turn make it flow naturally with the home.
The Disadvantages of an In-Home Elevator
- Longer Installation: The elevator will take much longer to install than a stairchair — usually taking a few weeks to months depending on the extensiveness of the installation and construction needed.
- Remodeling Required: The work to install an in-home elevator often requires a contractor and architect. The process involves creating a shaft, installing the lift, and ensuring it meets all safety code requirements for elevators.
Which Option is Best for Your Home?
The best choice comes down to your budget and overall preferences. If you do not want to remodel extensively, or you need a lift solution immediately, then the stairchair is your best option.
If you need something that will be in the home for years (possibly decades), and you want to add value, an in-home elevator could be the best option.
To assess all your choices, meet with an elevator expert at Inclinator-Elevette, Inc. We can help you choose among an array of in-home elevators and vertical lifts.