1. Learn about this resource. 

Residents can have one or several safety adaptations made in their home for free or at reduced cost. Examples of adaptations include:

  • Handrails and grab bars: railing placed along stairs or in the bathroom, making it easier to steady yourself and stand up

  • Bathtub cuts: a removable piece in the bathtub wall, making it easier to step in and out

  • Furniture risers: temporary blocks that increase the height of furniture, making it easier to stand up

  • Stairlifts: mechanical seats that lift people up and downstairs

  • Security camera system: up to 2 cameras placed on the exterior of your home that capture video of your property 

 

This program is called Safe at Home and is offered by The Department of Aging and Community Living.

2. Check if you are eligible.

You are eligible if all of these statements are true:

  • Your home is in DC.

  • You are an older adult (60+) or you are an adult with a disability (18+).

  • Your yearly gross income—your income before paying taxes—meets eligibility criteria. Check below.

add safety features to your home?

DO YOU WANT TO

3. Apply.


  1. Call the Department of Aging and Community Living at (202) 724-5626, Monday to Friday between 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. Say that you are interested in the Safe at Home program.
  2. Our community partner will determine your eligibility during our phone conversation.
  3. If you are eligible, we will send a referral to one of our designated contractors. These contractors install safety adaptations.
You can apply at any time.





4. Gather more information.

What happens after I apply?


  1. The contractor will schedule an in-home visit. While COVID-19 remains a concern, extra safety precautions are required of you and the contractor during the home visit. The contractor will complete an evaluation form, and confirm that your home meets the physical requirements for adaptations. During this visit, the contractor will make suggestions about safety adaptations that could be made and you’ll be able to choose which you’d like to move forward with.
  2. After the visit, you’ll receive paperwork in the mail laying out your options. If you are eligible for free safety adaptations you’ll work with DC Government’s partner—Homecare Partners. They’ll take care of scheduling the installation, and making the final inspection to ensure the work was done properly.
If you are not approved for support you will receive a letter mailed to your home notifying you. It will include information on how to appeal the denial of service.




Are there any additional requirements I should know about?


If you receive Safe at Home financial assistance and home adaptations as a renter, you must first get approval from your landlord. If you move out of the home, you must arrange and pay for the removal of the adaptations by a contractor. DC Government does not provide removal.




Who should I contact if I have questions?


First, take a look at the frequently asked questions at the bottom of the page. If you still have questions, please reach out to our Safe at Home team at (202) 724-5626, Monday to Friday between 8:30 am and 5 pm. Or, you can email the team at dacl@dc.gov using the subject line “Safe at Home.”




I still need help making my home safe. What should I do?


You can find information about other resources that might help make your home safer on our resource page.




Frequently Asked Questions


If I have received assistance from the program before, can I receive it again if I move or my needs change? You may be eligible to receive additional assistance from the program if you move or your needs change.




Do all eligible applicants receive home adaptations?


No. Assistance is provided on a first-come, first-serve basis until funds run out. In 2019, the program received 2,242 requests and was able to provide support to just more than half of the residents.





This resource is provided by:

Keywords: homeowners, renters, elderly, old, age-in-place, senior citizen, in-home safety adaptations, stairlifts, handrails, furniture risers, people with disabilities, income limits, accessibility, renovate, chair lift, make my home more accessible, renovate, physical disability

 

This page was last updated May 2021.

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This program is open to homeowners and renters.