Rental Unit Accessibility is Possible with VHDA Program
A longtime resident at one of our eleven properties recently received a grant through the Virginia Housing Development Authority’s (VHDA) Rental Unit Accessibility Modification Program (RUAM).
Funds from the grant, coupled with the help of Albemarle Housing Improvement Program (AHIP), allowed us to replace the tub in Daniel Meeks’ apartment with a walk-in shower.
Mr. Meeks, is a lifelong resident of Albemarle County and has a physical disability that makes it difficult for him to step into and out of his tub/shower.
“Before, I had to raise my leg to get in the tub and I don’t have any cartilage in my right knee. It became difficult and a bit dangerous,” Mr. Meeks said.
The process took a few months, but with the help of Piedmont Housing and AHIP the modification was successfully completed. Mr. Meeks said, “[Piedmont Housing] and AHIP were both great, and extremely professional and AHIP kept the floors clean. They all really did an amazing job!”
Meeks was satisfied with the options Piedmont Housing and AHIP gave him and can now enjoy longer showers and has no fear of risking injury.
Piedmont Housing serves as an administrator of VHDA’s RUAM, for renters with disabilities in our service area, which includes the city of Charlottesville and the counties of Albemarle, Greene, Fluvanna, Louisa, and Nelson. VHDA’s RUAM Grant Program makes funding available to assist with modifications to rental units to make them accessible for a specific tenant. The modifications made to the rental unit must relate to the tenant’s ability to function on a daily basis. These funds are available to persons earning 80% or less of the area median income, based on HUD guidelines.
Some common modifications include, but are not limited to:
- Ramp and chairlift installation
- Widening of doorways and sidewalks
- Remote entry devices
- Alterations to bathrooms (tub cuts, grab bars, toilets, faucets, etc.) and kitchens
Program funds are administered on a first-come, first-served basis up to maximum $6,000. If you have a disability and could use a modification to your rental home, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to see if you may qualify, and we will assist you with completing the application!