How Direct Access reviews apartment buildings for accessibility

The Americans with Disabilities Act sets out clear expectations (in addition to legal precedence) which outlines the ways in which building owners must promote the personal independence and comfort of their residents, of which many of are statistically likely to be disabled, by maintaining an inclusive site that caters to the accessible individual requirements of said residents. However, it is often the case that the rights of disabled people in residential buildings are not met, and that building owners are at risk or are guilty of non-compliance with the ADA. This is where Direct Access’ access consultants come into the picture. Our team can provide the assistance building owners need to achieve full compliance, and go beyond that to create a fully-functioning, welcoming, and truly inclusive community building. 

A tidy high-rise apartment living room with a green sofa, brown coffee table, small work desk near the windows and a large potted plant gently lit by the sun outside.
A close up shot of a button board on a modern stainless steel oven.

When reviewing a housing complex for accessibility, Direct Access’ consultants will comprehensively inspect, in addition to the residential areas themselves; common areas, entrances, exits, ramps, stairs, light switches, parking spaces, sidewalks, internal and external lighting levels, washer and dryer facilities, vending machines, seated areas, and everything else in between. While it goes without saying that each resident of a building’s home should meet their individual access requirements, it is the responsibility of building owners to ensure that all elements of the site are compliant with the ADA accessibility standards.

But how does Direct Access carry out an inspection of a building? Well, the scope of our inspection encompasses a comprehensive assessment of various areas and components within a building, resulting in a final report that building owners can use as a blueprint for their journey toward inclusion.

Direct Access will facilitate a consultant to travel to your site and carry out a thorough examination of the exterior areas, such as entrances, exits, ramps, stairs, parking spaces, sidewalks, and lighting. Additionally, the common areas, including the lobby, hallways, elevators, mailrooms, community rooms, and management offices, all of which will be examined in detail.   

The dwelling units themselves will also be evaluated, covering aspects such as interior doors, flooring, kitchens, bathrooms, accessible routes, lighting, and windows. Communication and signage features, including room identification signs, visual alarms, and tactile or Braille signage, will be assessed as well. The inspection will encompass site amenities like recreation areas and picnic areas.   

The goal is to identify both compliant and non-compliant features and provide recommendations for improvements to enhance accessibility throughout the apartment building, ensuring equal access for all residents and visitors.  

As alluded to earlier, Direct Access’s approach extends beyond assessing ADA compliance. We strive to create inclusive environments that exceed minimum accessibility requirements. Our goal is to provide solutions and modifications that enhance overall accessibility and usability for individuals with disabilities.   

We focus on creating spaces that promote independence, dignity, and equal participation for everyone. Throughout the inspection process, our team actively seeks opportunities to suggest improvements that may not be explicitly required by ADA standards but contribute to a more inclusive environment. These recommendations may include additional grab bars, adjustable height countertops, improved lighting for individuals with visual impairments, or the implementation of assistive technologies.   

By considering the diverse needs of individuals with disabilities, we offer practical and creative solutions to remove barriers and create welcoming and inclusive spaces. Our recommendations and modifications address not only physical accessibility but also cognitive, sensory, and social aspects, ensuring that everyone can navigate, interact, and enjoy life within an apartment building with ease and comfort.

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