Glenda's Renovated Bungalow
As soon as Glenda laid eyes on this charming historic bungalow she knew it was the home she'd been searching for. Although it was old and a bit run down, she saw its potential. See how Glenda has transformed this house into her own colourful accessible oasis where she feels free.
Large living spaces
Accessibility and Inclusion Features:
Lowered light switches
Raised garden beds
Wheelchair accessible pathways
Remote controlled blinds
The Basic Structure of the House Was Perfect
Glenda fell in love with this house on first sight. She was drawn in by the lush gardens that surrounded the property. Glenda was walking when she and her then husband bought this home, but she knew she would use a wheelchair in the future. They were looking for a home that could be made accessible and this single storey dwelling with its wide hallway and spacious rooms was nearly there.
The photos on this page are interactive. When you hover your mouse, or finger if using a touch screen, over the photos, points of interest will appear. Click on these points to learn more about the specific accessibility features that help make this house great.
Renovating To Make It Your Own
One of the first major renovations was to transform a stuffy closed off bedroom into a light filled office and living room. They removed a wall and put in huge windows that overlook the back garden.
After Glenda and her husband divorced, she decided to fill the house with warm, bright colours to make it her own. She painted the living room and kitchen orange and the hallway green. The bathroom also got a makeover. She couldn't decide on which tiles to get so she went with them all. Glenda had to hunt around to find her beautiful aubergine chair, but there was no way she was going to settle for a standard blue shower chair, which she said would make her feel like she was in a hospital. Just because the chair is designed for access needs, does not mean it shouldn't also be designed for beauty.
Once Glenda started using her wheelchair, she kept burning herself while cooking because she had to reach up to use the stove. Disability SA said they would pay to have an accessible kitchen put in, but they told Glenda she could only choose between a beige, white, cream or grey counter. Just like her hunt for a beautiful shower chair, she felt the world was trying to tell her that people living with disabilities shouldn't be bothered with aesthetics. But why? There is absolutely no reason that accessible design and aesthetic design can't go together. Everyone wants a home that's comfortable, functional and matches their style and personality.
Glenda was willing to fight for her right to create a home that makes her happy. Eventually Disability SA and Glenda reached an agreement. She could have her striking aubergine counter top if she paid the difference. As it turned out, there was no price difference in the end.
As Glenda's condition progressed, she had a few falls trying to get into bed. Eventually she organised to have a support worker assist her. One day Glenda came across a Youtube video of a man with less mobility than her using a ceiling hoist to get in and out of bed by himself. That's when Glenda realised that she too could do this. Today Glenda uses a ceiling hoist without the assistance of a support worker. This piece of equipment restored her freedom to stay up till 3:00 in the morning chatting with friends, watching movies, or doing whatever she wants to. If she hadn't seen that Youtube video, Glenda may never have recovered this freedom. That's why it is so important to share knowledge and experience.
One of Glenda's favourite features of the house is her garden. Glenda always loved gardening, but initially she stopped once she had to use a wheelchair. But she soon discovered raised garden beds were all she needed to restore her freedom to garden.
Glenda says that her house is her oasis. Here she feels free.