Home Modification client with Architecture & Access employees

NDIS Home Modifications – Understanding the updated operating guidelines

What does a Building Construction Practitioner and Building Works project manager do?

In September last year the NDIS released updated Home Modification Operating Guidelines and an updated Home Modifications Guidance for builders and designers. These documents provide greater clarity to; assist people to include Home Modifications in their plan, explain the funding criteria, more clearly define minor and complex home modifications and what can (and cannot) be funded.

This article provides information on how these changes impact Architecture & Access’ NDIS home modification model of service delivery.

We support occupational therapists and NDIS participants to achieve their goals in gaining independence, dignity, and safety in their home. Architecture & Access provides:

  • home modification assessments to support the implementation of occupational therapist recommendations
  • design and documentation
  • project management during the construction stage of projects

Our Service model is an end-to-end, client focussed home modification service.

There are two types of home modifications:

  • Minor home modifications
  • Complex home modifications

Minor home modifications

Minor home modifications are custom-built changes in the home, that generally:

  • are straightforward, and non-structural
  • have a relatively low risk of major problems
  • only affect one or two areas of the home
  • cost less than $20,000 in total

Minor modifications are prescribed by an occupational therapist who can obtain quotes from builders and submit to the NDIS for funding.

Our service offer:  We are available to support occupational therapists and answer queries over the telephone. We can assist the occupational therapist with their questions to determine if a modification is structural, building permits and domestic building insurance (DBI) are required and questions about building contracts.

Complex home modifications

The NDIS defines a complex home modification as “usually structural, custom-built changes to your home that are higher risk and/or cost more than minor modifications”.

Complex home modifications typically involve:

  • highly complex or technical works or impact on several areas of your home
  • relatively higher risk of problems arising throughout the process
  • the participant being unable to use a critical area (e.g. toilet) or being unable to live in the house for a number of weeks
  • building approvals or permissions, and certification of work such as plumbing and electrical works

The areas of the home that may be considered include:

  • dwelling access/entrance (e.g. path of travel, door widening, automation, ramps, vertical and platform lifts)
  • dwelling internal access (e.g. door widening and automation)
  • bathroom (e.g. stepless showers, accessible basins and toilets, and grabrails)
  • bedroom and living area modifications
  • ceiling hoists
  • kitchen and laundry modifications
  • home automation

Our service offer:

The Building and Construction Professional (BCP) is funded by the NDIS to work with the participant, their family and their occupational therapist to design the home modification, prepare the plans and schedules, and obtain the quotations from the builders. They provide the occupational therapist with a report that includes the total cost of delivery that is submitted to the NDIS to fund the project.

For complex home modifications NDIS will fund a Building Works Project Manager (BWPM) at Architecture & Access. Our BWPMs assist you to manage project risks and the development and construction stages of your home modification.

Our BWPMs are independent of builders and help you understand your building contract and communicate with your builder. They will make sure:

  • the work meets all relevant building codes, standards, and legal requirements
  • the modification is completed as agreed in the building contract
  • the participant understands the building contract and how to get the builder started. They will oversee the works at key stages and keep all parties informed

The BCP role works to define and develop the home modification so a complete funding application can be made to the NDIS. Once funded, the BWPM role supports participants and their family members to manage the complexity of the construction stage.

For all enquiries and referrals, please complete our contact form.

Architecture & Access


Level 5, 369 Royal Parade
Parkville VIC Australia 3052

T 1300 715 866
E info@archaccess.com.au


Bowman House, Level 4,
Suite 41B, 276 Edward Street
Brisbane QLD 4000 Australia

T 1300 715 866
E info@archaccess.com.au