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Disabled people talk about difficulties of buying a home

10th December 2015

This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.

In a post on the BBC’s Disability News blog, disabled couples have talked about how important it is to have accessible accommodation. They also go on to say that it is becoming increasingly difficult for this to be attained, mainly because the income that comes with having a disability can make it difficult to get a mortgage.

Applying for a mortgage and getting it approved is challenging for many as it is, with approval relying on a stable income. Welfare benefits can be declared as income according to some mortgage lenders, but not all, which makes it difficult to say for sure that you have a regular and stable income if you have mobility difficulties that prevent you from having regular work.

In the post by Kate Ansell, the case of Sarah Rigby, a former physicist from Liverpool, is presented. She has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which affects her joints and leaves her feeling tired and with limited mobility. Whilst she can claim Disability Living Allowance, the household income comes from partner Carl. Their joint mortgage is affordable on a single salary to provide a bit of security, but Rigby isn’t comfortable with the imbalance in responsibility, she said, "I mind him paying for it all".

Looking to the future, they will need to move in the next five years to a home better suited for the progression of her condition, with a downstairs loo and room for a new stairlift. Rigby went on to say, "I know that need is coming and it makes me feel like a burden."

The difficulty appears to lie in obtaining credit that is affordable and mainstream, planning for the future if a condition worsens, and also balancing a mortgage with the extra outgoings that those with a disability often need, such as transport and mobility equipment. Whilst a challenge, there is financial help available to cover the cost of stairlifts and other mobility equipment. Charity Scope also has some useful money advice pages.

Image Credit: Christian Schnettelker (flickr.com)