March 7, 2013

Modification Grant Can Improve Daily Life for People with Disabilities

We’re all born with a desire for independence. When physical disabilities threaten that independence, improved accessibility is one key to restoring it. But, improving accessibility — especially in rental housing — is often easier said than done.

Landlords are required by fair housing laws to permit modifications to an apartment to make it barrier-free. However, the renter usually bears the cost of these modifications, which can be substantial. Fortunately, help is available through VHDA’s Rental Unit Modification Grant Program.


A tenant with disabilities who earns 80 percent or less of the area median income (AMI) may be eligible for grant assistance up to $2,000. Modifications must relate to the tenant’s ability to function on a daily basis. Barrier-free enhancements made possible by the grant include: ramps, railings, tub cuts, grab bars, remote entry devices, ADA compliant toilets and accessible cabinets.

Grant applications must be made through accepted agents, including but not limited to: Centers for Independent Living (CILs), local housing authorities, rehab hospitals and landlords who need accessibility modifications for a specific tenant. Check out our grant application to see how easy it can be to help provide renters with improved accessibility.

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