University of Minnesota Extension
Menu Menu

Extension > Family > Personal Finance > Housing > Designing Accessible Housing


Designing Accessible Housing diverse couple receiving home keys

Marilyn J. Bruin, Extension Specialist and Professor — Design, Housing, & Apparel; and Diane Corrin, Extension Educator

Revised January 2010 by the author (Marilyn J. Bruin).

Universal or Lifespan Housing is design that allows individuals to use their homes fully. The design does not call attention to the special features that have been introduced to accommodate a range of abilities. The home feels comfortable to all and is easy to maintain.

The following design features accommodate individuals with diverse abilities, are easy to use, and minimize hazards:

For more information about designing accessible housing see Practical Guide to Universal Home Design.


Design, Housing & Apparel — University of Minnesota. (n.d.). Housing as we age: A consumer's guide to home adaptation. Design, Housing & Apparel — University of Minnesota.

Other Recommended Resources

Housing Options for Seniors — Reviews different housing alternatives for seniors and their families to consider.

Universal DesignInstitute for Human Centered Design — Reviews the history principles, resources, and more for Universal Design.

Practical Guide to Universal Home DesignEast Metro Seniors Agenda for Independent Living (SAIL) — Practical guide for incorporating Universal Design elements when remodeling, building, or buying a home.

  • © 2015 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
  • The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. Privacy