Independent Living Service
Babergh and Mid Suffolk's Independent Living Service (ILS) aims to encourage independence at home, by providing a supportive network across the county.
The ILS will focus on creating a suitable home environment for our vulnerable residents, their families and carers. This includes listening to people and offering guidance on financial support, adaptations and relocation assistance.
How we can help you
Our advice and support services are designed to help you live safely and independently in your home. They include:
- helping you to apply for the right grant for your needs
- support in completing application forms and providing financial evidence
- working with occupational therapists to ensure the suitable works are carried out to meet your needs
- referring work to our approved list of building contractors
- supervising the work while it is being carried out to ensure it is completed to a satisfactory standard
- referring you to agencies to help you access welfare benefits, concessions or other support or advocacy services
- looking at alternative housing options if you need to consider moving to more suitable accommodation
Who is the service for?
The service is for residents who:
- live in Babergh or Mid Suffolk
- have a registered (or able to be registered as) disability
- own a home or rent from a private landlord
What Grants Can I apply for
We offer three grants to adapt your home
- Minor adaptations Grant up to £7500 non means tested
- Disabled Facilities Grant – Means tested up to £30,000
- Minor Equipment – up to £1,000
If you are a Council or housing association tenant, contact your Housing Officer for help and advice on how you can remain safely in your home or consider alternative accommodation.
If you have any further questions, please read our FAQs further down this page.
Housing Assistance Policy
Our Housing Assistance Policy can give assistance to disabled residents to improve accessibility to and suitability of their home.
The policy can:
- enable residents to remain living independently in their own home
- help prevent hospital, care home or residential home admissions
Frequently Asked Questions
Where do I start?
Once an Occupational Therapist (OT) has referred your assessment to us, our caseworker will contact you to discuss your needs. In most cases, they will arrange a telephone call to explain how we can help you and to complete application forms. To find out more please read the information from Suffolk County Council
Can a friend or family member be with me for the visit?
Yes, we can arrange to visit at a time that best suits you. You can have a family member, friend or other representative with you during the visit.
Will I have to move out while the works are being carried out?
In most cases, you will be able to remain at home whilst works are being carried out.
If a temporary move is required, it is your responsibility to source and fund alternative accommodation.
Do I have to find my own builder?
No, we use a variety of approved builders to carry out the work on our behalf.
What happens if I change my mind about having the works carried out?
If you decide that you no longer want to carry out the works, there may be a charge. The charge would be for the service delivered or any works that have already been carried out up to that point. If you do change your mind, it is important that you let us know as soon as possible.
How long will the work take?
This depends on the complexity of the works. For example, the installation of a level access shower can take up to three or four months, from initial contact. A complex schedule of works may take six months or longer.
We will keep you informed throughout the process.
Who checks the work?
One of our technical officers will inspect the work once it is completed. They will liaise with the builder on your behalf if there are any issues with the quality of the works or any defects. Planning and Building Control Officers will carry out their own inspections, where needed.
Who pays the builders?
Babergh & Mid Suffolk District Councils will pay the contractors. We will send you an invoice for your contribution.
Are there guarantees for the works?
Once the works have been completed, you can report any defects or issues with the works and any equipment installed in the first year (12 months).
If there are any additional guarantees, these will be explained to you by your caseworker.
What about maintenance?
Your caseworker will advise you of any equipment that will need maintenance or servicing (e.g. stairlift).
Babergh & Mid Suffolk District Councils are not responsible for carrying out or paying for any maintenance or servicing.
What do I do if I'm not happy with the work?
You should contact your caseworker as soon as possible to discuss your concerns. There is a defects period of 12 months from completion of the works.
Who do I contact if I have any questions or concerns?
Your caseworker will be your main contact for all queries and concerns that you may have. They will act on your behalf during the whole process. This includes arranging any necessary visits to your home by people delivering the Independent Living Service. These could be from surveyors, OTs or contractors.