Areas of Interest

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Welcome to our "Areas of Interest" page. Specialized Home Design, (SHD) will strive to discuss specialty topic areas within this section of our website. For ease of searching, the articles are categorized by topic with the topics arranged in alphabetical order. We look forward to your input as to what we may include and develop on the following pages. Please let us know if you have an article you would like to share or if there is a specific topic you would like to see included.

Click on the category in the list to go to articles and information pertaining to that topic:


Contractors and Remodelers

Below are some tips to help you in the search for a contractor and/or remodeler.

Considerations When Hiring a Contractor or Remodelor

Click on the title for the considerations.

Questions to Ask of a Potential Contractor/Remodeler

Click on the title to view the questions.


Homes for an Owner's Lifetime

This article looks at the benefits of homes that contain concepts and principles of universal & accessible home design allowing the resident to stay in the home for a long time. The article is courtesy of the Lifetime Design Committee of the Home & Building Association of Greater Grand Rapids (HBAGGR).

Home Evaluations and Home Assessments

The person doing the report should always consider what type of report to do. Below are some ideas to help determine the proper report type.

Home Evaluations vs. Home Assessments

Who should perform home evaluations and who should perform home assessments? Click the title for an explanation.

Home Evaluator vs. Home Modification Coordinator

Click on the title for an explanation of the difference between an home evaluator and a home modification coordinator.

Home Modifications-A Team Approach

Those that are involved in a home modification project that incorporates an individual with a disability should take every measure to ensure the health and safety of their client. This means that there should always be a team approach when considering modifying the home environment. The construction professional (i.e. contractors, remodeler, architects, home designers, etc.) should work with the client's medical practitioners (i.e. physician, physical therapist, occupational therapist, etc.) to produce the safest and most functional environment for the client and his/her family.


Home Modification Team

(Click on the link for a brief summary of the players role in a home modification project or new build)

1. The Client

2. Medical Practitioners

3. Contractor/Remodelor

4. Design Team

5. Insurance Company (third party payer)

6. Case Managers

7. Attorneys

8. Specialty Vendors

Universities & Colleges (residential facilities)

     1. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign    

Disabled Students Declare Independence, by Design - In a new dorm at the U. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign designed for students with physical disabilities, Leo Kullander (left) visits a neighbor, John Burton. "Everyone here was very open and talked freely about things that I considered taboo in high school," says Mr. Kullander.

Learn more about accessible housing at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign