First-time homebuilders Mick and Kirst Button required a unique home, one that would be accessible, to support the needs of their daughter, a young person with cerebral palsy who uses a wheelchair.
The couple spoke with New Homes about their homebuilding journey under Broadway Homes’ wing.
What made you decide to build with Broadway Homes?
When we looked at some of Broadway Homes’ display homes, we were impressed by what we saw. Not only was the standard on display good quality but, importantly, all of the staff were great too. The expertise and care they showed throughout the whole process was outstanding.
A lot of people who have built houses have said they would never do it again because it was a nightmare, but we would jump right into it and do it all again. For us, it was a really great experience.
What considerations influenced your build?
A week before our daughter Saba, turned one, she received what was proven to be a faulty flu vaccine.
This left her with a variety of medical conditions, including spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy level five, epilepsy, respiratory weakness and a host of other medical issues.
Saba needs around-the-clock care and it was imperative to be able to build and design a home around her needs.
What were elements you incorporated in the design to accommodate Saba?
Access was number one – a key element of the design was to have everything on one floor. We didn’t want a second storey, or to have to put a lift in. We had to ensure the whole home – from garage to backyard – didn’t have any steps.
We wanted Saba to be able to access all parts of the house, regardless of whether she was in her wheelchair or in her hospital bed.
We made all the passageways and doors into some of the rooms wide enough so, if Saba is not well and staying in her hospital bed, we can wheel her bed throughout the house.
We can wheel her bed into our bedroom to watch her overnight, and we can even take it outside to the alfresco area.
At the front of the house we included a hydrotherapy pool alongside a therapy room. This means Saba can continue to receive the additional care and services she requires from therapists without having to walk them through the whole house.
To future-proof the home for Saba, we had hoists installed in all her areas of use, including her bathroom, her bedroom and the hydrotherapy room.
What other inclusions did you specifically request to be built into the home?
We wanted a large open-plan living space with a lots of windows, natural light and greenery. This not only accommodates Saba’s needs, but gives a place for both of us and our two other children to relax and unwind.
Tips you have for people building a home?
Do your homework. Go and check out a variety of display homes. We also kept an eye out while we were driving around, drawing inspiration from houses we saw.
Look on Pinterest and put together a board of design concepts, and textures – anything that inspires you – this will help guide your decisions when it comes time to build.
Also, measure your rooms out. You need to know how big they are actually going to be, looking at something on paper doesn’t always give you a true feeling of scale.