3 Questions To Ask Before Buying A Stair Lift For Your Parent

Does your elderly parent have trouble getting up and down the stairs? Are you concerned for their safety? If so, you may want to purchase a stair lift for them. A stair lift is a safe and effective way to get your parent up and down the stairs without any risk that they will fall and injure themselves. All stair lifts function essentially the same way. A rail bolts into the stair treads along a wall. A chair or lift is then attached to the rail to carry the individual up and down. There are some differences to consider, though. Here are a few questions to ask before you buy a stair lift:

Do you want a straight or curved lift? A straight lift is exactly what it's name suggests—it goes in a straight line from the bottom to the top of the stairs. However, your parent's stairs may not be straight. Or they may need help getting around a corner and into a certain room. In that case, you may need to get a curved lift, which can go around corners. Both kinds are widely available. However, curved lifts are usually more expensive than straight ones.

Do you want electric or battery powered? Stair lifts can be powered through the homes electrical wiring or through a rechargeable battery. The benefit to the electric version is you know it will work as long as the home has power. With the battery version, there's a chance it could fail if the battery power is low. The last thing you want is for your parent to be stuck in the middle of the stairs.

However, some lifts are built so that the battery automatically recharges as soon as it reaches the lower base. Also, in many cases, battery-powered lifts generate less noise and offer a smoother ride.

How will you pay for it? Lifts can be costly depending on how big and complex it needs to be. They may not always be covered by Medicare. If your parent is a veteran, you may be able to apply for a healthcare grant from the Veterans' Administration. If your parent has private supplemental insurance, it's possible that it may cover some or all of the cost. Also, you may want to look into buying a refurbished lift. Sometimes lifts are only used for a short period before the user has to transition into a healthcare facility. Some companies buy those lifts, refurbish them, and resell them for a discounted price.

For more information, contact a stair lift company, like All-Star Lifts. They can recommend the best option to meet your parent's needs.