Purchasing a stairlift will indisputably give anyone who has a physical ailment that restricts their mobility more freedom and independence. It might even make it possible for them to stay home and maintain their lifestyle. Nevertheless, many people who need a stairlift, often, decide to not even look at the available options because they think that they won’t be able to afford to purchase one. If you have decided that the time has come to buy one but are worried about not being able to afford a stairlift, think again.
There are several ways in which you can get the resources you need to purchase that most needed stairlift. Financial institutions, federal and state agencies, and non-profit organizations are among the agencies that can provide monetary assistance or financing to help you acquire your stairlift.
The first step is to contact companies that sell stairlifts in your area and request no-obligation quotes. Also, ask about the company’s inventory. Some companies might offer special pricing for display units, units that are used or refurbished. Find out if they have payment plans. You can also set a budget or spending limit. Once you have gathered all the information, it’s time to start looking at your options.
1. Buy used or reconditioned equipment- Prices for an entry-level model for a straight stairway stairlift start at around $2,100 at a well-known dealer we researched. Newfangled models for a curved stairway, with all the bells and whistles, can cost as much as $10,000. Note that the $2,100 model can cost $600 or $700 less if it’s a used unit and about $300 less if it’s reconditioned. Reconditioned stairlifts are often units that have been used as demos at trade shows or as floor models in showrooms. If you acquire one of these models, you can save up to 30%.
2. Payment plan provided by the seller- Several stairlift dealers offer payment plans that allow customers to pay for the equipment in installments without incurring in finance charges. With this same as cash financing option, customers can make payments for six to nine months. Scheduling a payment plan directly with the seller eliminates the middleman and does not add to the final cost of the equipment. It does, however, require you to pay the total sum, installation included, within the set period of time.
3. Financing through the seller- It is possible to purchase your stairlift through a financial institution partnered with the seller. When you finance the equipment, you are buying on credit and agreeing to the terms and conditions arranged between the dealer and the lender. This type of transaction, as with other credit purchases, is dependent on your credit history. An example of this type of agreement is AmeriGlide, in a partnership with FirstBank. This HUD-insured financing is available for seniors 62 and older who own their home.
4. Financing through your bank or credit union- Often, local banks and credit unions will work with you and offer low-interest loans to help with the acquisition of medical equipment.
5. Area Agencies on Aging- Your local Agency on Aging may have programs that can help you with part of the cost associated with making home modifications to make staying at home safe. These agencies receive money from the federal government to be used to help senior citizens by increasing the use of home-based services. Occasionally, the states expand the projects to include services that go beyond the scope of what the grant program covers, such as social work/counseling, caregiver training, and even housing modifications.
6. Veterans Administration- If you are a veteran with a disability and a medical need for equipment that will help with your mobility at home, the Veterans Administration may have options for you. The Special Housing Adaptation Grant (SHA) is used to help veterans with service-connected disabilities modify their existing home. Of course, there are limitations and requirements that veterans must meet to be eligible for this grant.
7. HCBS Waiver Programs from Medicaid- Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) refers to care delivered in the home or community. This type of program helps people stay in their home or community rather than moving into an assisted living facility. The programs are aimed at particular groups and vary by state. Candidates must meet the criteria in order to benefit from the program.
8. Tax deductions- Come tax time, the purchase of your stairlift can be included as a required medical necessity item on your tax return. The amount that you will be able to deduct depends on whether the value of your home increased with the addition of the equipment. If the property’s value does not increase, you can then deduct the entire cost as a medical expense. However, if the property’s value does increase, the deduction you will be able to claim is equal to the difference between the medical expense and the increase in the value of your property. Before claiming any deductions, check with the IRS for the latest requirements and instructions.