- make your home new again,
- repair or restore your home to good condition, or
- alter the layout of your home, and
these renovations are not needed as a result of your transport accident injuries we cannot pay for them.
What home modifications we will pay for
We will pay for:
- Simple home modifications, such as a hand rail or an access ramp.
- More complex modifications, involving major building/structural work, such as widening doorways or installing stepless showers.
For equipment that can easily be installed, such as grab rails, see our Equipment policy.
For your safety, we need to make sure that it is reasonable to modify your home.
We can only consider modification to the parts of your home you need reasonable access to, for example:
In some circumstances we may approve home modifications as a multi-step process.
We will consider the recommendations of the occupational therapist in assessing suitable temporary accommodation, but you will need to get approval from us to pay for any temporary accommodation costs before you move in.
Alternatives to home modifications
- The necessary reasonable cost to relocate you to another home that is suitable and capable of being reasonably modified,
- Temporary accommodation while you are actively engaged in the home modification process.
Where a modification cannot be made due to illegality, access issues or where the cost of overcoming these issues is more than the value of your home, we will look at other potential reasonable solutions.
Moving to a new home
If you choose to move home after your original home has been modified and the “new” home needs modification, we will consider many factors when deciding whether we will contribute to the cost:
- If the new home is appropriate to meet your needs related to your transport accident injury
- The amount we paid for previous home modifications
- The reasonableness of the frequency of home modifications due to relocation or changes of ownership
- The purpose of the home modifications.
If, in our opinion, the home you are moving to cannot be reasonably modified, we can’t approve modifications. To make sure that the new home you choose is appropriate, we encourage you to contact us as soon as you can so that we can help.
If the home is not suitable for modification an alternative private rental property should be sourced. In those circumstances, the occupational therapist should review the home before you sign the lease to make sure that it will meet your needs.
External covered transfer area
If you are ambulant, we cannot contribute to either a transfer area or a covered walkway.
Heating and cooling
We can consider paying the reasonable cost of necessary home automation modifications when you need them due to your transport injuries, and when these modifications will clinically increase your independence and your ability to complete functional activities.
Laws and regulations
Home modifications are subject to the regular laws, regulations and rules that govern home renovation and construction including:
We cannot pay for any modifications that do not meet these rules, regulations and laws.
How the process works
- Assess your situation, the suitability of your home and your injuries,
- Consider the capability of your current residence,
- Provide a detailed report to us that outlines your needs,
- Make recommendations about what modifications are needed.
Once we have reviewed the report, we will refer your recommended home modifications to an external project manager. Once the project manager has prepared a project plan and provided an appropriate cost estimation, we will let you know what modifications have been approved.
After your modifications have been approved
You will receive in writing:
- Formal approval of the home modification request,
- The schedule for works,
- The relevant documentations,
- Details of all the modifications we approve.
You may need to sign a Capital Services Agreement.
Your TAC appointed project manager
We can appoint an external project manager who will:
- Conduct site visits,
- Arrange designs and explain them to you, so that you understand how your home will change,
- Engage a builder after a quote or tender process.
The project manager will conduct regular site visits. Once the modifications are complete they will conduct a final inspection, which we may also attend (if required). It’s important that you attend this final inspection meeting, to make sure that you are happy with the modifications.
Capital services agreement
You will need to sign a contract called a Capital Services Agreement (CSA) before any work on the modifications can begin. This contract is required when the cost of the modifications are more than the Capital Service Agreement Limit. The CSA outlines the roles and responsibilities of each party including:
- Frequency of modifications,
- Subsequent modifications, and
- Ownership, including notification of change of ownership.
Under the contractual agreement we are unable to contribute towards the cost of modifying a subsequent home that you own within 8 years after the original modifications, unless there are exceptional circumstances that require you to move. If this is not the case, you are expected to pay for modifications on your next home yourself.
How much we will pay
Where significant modifications are needed, you may ask for extra work, but if the extra work is not related to your transport accident injury then you will have to pay for it.
What we won’t pay for
We cannot contribute to, or buy, a residence for you. We also cannot pay your rent.
- Are for a person other than you,
- Are not reasonable, necessary or appropriate,
- Are not clinically justified, safe and effective,
- Where the owner of a property, body corporate or other responsible authority has not given permission for modifications,
- Are illegal or do not comply with the relevant laws, regulations or planning permissions.
- These include instances where the building works to modify your home identify incidental structural or safety issues that need addressing, such as faulty wiring, plumbing or restumping of the premises.
- Once modifications have been made, it is your responsibility to maintain their condition. This requires you to take steps to keep the modifications in a safe condition and to avoid damage other than “fair wear and tear” to them.
If a modification has been made or installed improperly, the costs associated with repair or to reinstall are the responsibility of the tradesperson or builder.