Whether you are building a wheelchair ramp yourself or contracting with a professional, you need to answer several questions before construction starts. Although the ramp might appear to be simple, it is a complicated addition to your home that requires careful planning. To help you make the right decisions, here are some questions to ask before building.

Where Will the Ramp Be Located?

Placing the wheelchair ramp at the front door sounds like the most logical location, but there are some factors that could make it the less-than-ideal spot. Depending on the size of the ramp, it could be an eyesore that requires the removal of the sidewalk or driveway. You might even have to obtain special permits to have it in the front yard if it is not at street level after construction.

By contrast, if the ramp is placed at the back of the home, you might find it easier to install, and it will not have the same impact on your home's curb appeal. If your home already has a deck, adding the ramp could be a relatively easy task.

What Material to Use for the Ramp?

Many people automatically think of wood when it comes to the wheelchair ramp, but there is another choice that should be considered. Metal ramps can sometimes be more expensive than wood ramps, and the metal material could also be less than appealing, but metal ramps are highly durable.

However, a wood ramp could possibly save you money and be more aesthetically pleasing than the metal. You have several choices of woods available that will fit into your home's architectural style and design without issue. The wood can be treated to strengthen it against damage from environmental factors, such as rain.

Are Landings Necessary?

Ramps are typically designed at an incline so that the user can go up and down the ramp with ease. However, the addition of landings could offer more options for using the ramp.

A flat landing along the ramp can provide the user with a resting place. He or she can park their chair on the landing and enjoy time outdoors. The landing also gives the user a place to stop and rest if he or she becomes tired while going up or down the ramp.

Consult with a contractor to find out other questions you should answer before the construction of the ramp is started. You can avoid design and construction mistakes by taking his or her advice. 

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