A residential elevator installation provides many different benefits for the occupants of a home, including increased home value. Unfortunately, a hasty decision could decimate your investment. Before selecting a home elevator for the price alone, think about how these factors will impact the elevator’s price.
Six Things to Consider for a Residential Elevator Installation
1. What levels of the home does the elevator need to serve?
For some homes, the price of the elevator may vary based on the number of levels to be served. Essentially, an elevator that needs to serve multiple levels will have a higher cost.
2. What Type of Warranty Exists?
A warranty helps to safeguard against manufacturing defects and installation issues. There are two parts of the warranty you should be aware of: the manufacturer’s warranty and the installer’s warranty. Most established manufacturers (in business for 10 or more years) will cover the cost of parts for one to two years. Installers will usually cover the installation and labor for six months.
3. How Will the Elevator Impact the Home’s Value?
An elevator installation will increase the value of your home as well as make it more attractive for future buyers. More and more families are looking for their homes to accommodate multi-generation occupants and visitors. This is a critical consideration when pricing the installation of a home elevator.
4. How Much Space Will Be Needed for a Residential Elevator Installation?
Homeowners must consider what and who will be using the elevator in order to know how much space will be required. For example, an individual may weigh approximately 200 pounds. However, if this individual will also be transporting a 150-pound power chair or wheelchair in the elevator, the elevator must be able to support 350 pounds.
If you consider caregivers and other individuals in the elevator simultaneously, the weight capacity may need to be between 500 and 600 pounds. The average capacity for a home elevator is 750-1,000 lbs, which is usually enough for a wheelchair passenger and caregiver, or four passengers.
It’s important to have an elevator that can at least support two couples to avoid having an embarrassing situation where the elevator can’t support the combined weight. Based on these considerations, the average space needed for a home elevator is 25 square feet which will yield a maximum of 12-15 square feet interior space due to code restrictions.
5. What About Maintenance?
When considering the pricing of a home elevator, homeowners should think about future maintenance costs. A home elevator’s machinery requires regular servicing, and building codes could change.
Ongoing maintenance on an elevator is critical to its long term operation. An elevator can’t be unplugged and replaced like a dishwasher, and it is meant to last 20-30 years so regular upkeep is essential. Remember that an elevator’s job is to move people between floors safely, and if it’s not maintained properly the consequence could include someone getting stuck.
We recommend that home elevators are serviced once to twice a year to ensure optimal operation.
6. What Are the State’s Elevator Inspection Requirements?
Depending on the state, a single-family home may not be required to pass an annual elevator inspection. However, certain states may impose specific laws for the inspection of home elevators on a biannual basis.
For example, Virginia leaves elevator inspections to the governing authority of local municipalities. Yet Massachusetts requires the recertification of home elevators every other year. It’s up to the homeowner to ensure safe maintenance of their home elevator for family and friends. If homeowners neglect their responsibilities for proper maintenance, there could be legal ramifications of liability in the case of an accident causing personal injury.
Considering all these factors will help ensure you have an elevator that meets your needs, has the flexibility to meet your future needs and provides you with long term satisfaction and safety. Since a home elevator is considered an investment in a home’s value, homeowners should take time to ensure it will be a positive investment and serve them in the near and long term.
To learn more about home elevators and typical installation costs, book a free in-home evaluation Virginia Home Elevator, Stairlift & Ramp today or call us at 1-757-749-9532