Statement
COVID-19

Issued 4th November 2020

Coronavirus: Covid-19 continues to bring an unprecedented global challenge. Stiltz Ltd. has been and will continue to review activities daily to comply with the guidelines issued by the Government.

Stiltz is a proud member of the British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA) through whom we are co-ordinating industry efforts to keep the most vulnerable living safely in their own homes.

Reducing the instance of accidents within the home will help reduce stress on the NHS hospital care system. 

For existing customers, a Stiltz Homelift can be that lifeline to independence. Our home care support policy means Stiltz engineers continue to provide an essential service by maintaining customers’ lifts for ongoing safe, reliable and independent access while acting within Government guidelines.

You can contact our service and breakdown helpline any time, day or night, on 0330 053 5749.

For new homelift installations, we offer the options of a phone call, remote video consultation via tablet/laptop/smartphone, or email consultation. For those with an urgent in-home consultation need, we will minimise risk by following the latest Government guidelines.

Additional processes have been put in place to mitigate risk to you, our staff and the wider Stiltz community:

We will request confirmation that nobody at the property we are due to visit has Covid-19 or is defined as extremely vulnerable. If Covid-19 is present, or a person is isolating or deemed as extremely vulnerable, we will follow government advice.

All customer visits will be subject to additional sanitation measures. Stiltz installers/engineers will wash or sanitise their hands before entering your property and upon leaving. They will not offer to shake hands, will refuse offers of a beverage and will maintain the prescribed 2-metre distance.

All office and field-based staff will continue to be issued regular health and safety bulletins.

All field-based staff will confirm they are clear of symptoms before commencing their working day.

All staff who fall ill with Covid-19 or who are self-isolating will receive full pay during the period they are indisposed.

Stiltz will follow government advice at all times. We all owe a duty of care to our families, other employees, our customers and the rest of our community. Our priority is customer and staff safety whilst continuing to provide the necessary home care support to ensure vital independence.

Mike Lord
Chairman and CEO
Stiltz Ltd

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Call 01943668920

All about home lifts

In this latest Q&A, Stiltz Homelifts co-founder Lachlan Faulkner answers some of the more popular questions posed by customers.

Lachlan FaulknerHow is the typical user profile of people seeking accessibility products changing?

Increasingly, many seniors are choosing to ‘age in place’. That is, remain in their family home, on their own terms and surrounded by an established social and familial support network; they want to avoid relocating or downsizing as much as possible.

Customers who choose home lifts in preference to stairlifts tend to be retired or semi-retired professionals who wish to adapt rather than replace their multi-level homes. They know there will be a need to support personal mobility and to successfully future-proof for the coming years.

As awareness of home lifts has grown over the last two to three years, there is now a greater demand for domestic lift products from a wider audience; including those of all ages who are living with restricted mobility. Easier access to funding through grants such as the Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG), has also accelerated this demand. Stiltz homelift customers extend to multi-generational families and also a number of younger persons who can benefit from positive and accessible living – through the simple addition of a contemporary domestic lift.

Those embarking on wholesale home renovation or self-building their dream property from the ground up often look to install features such as wet rooms and through-floor home lifts to provide cast-iron assurance that their homes will be future-proofed for many years to come. Stiltz Homelifts has certainly seen a significant increase in enquiries from self-builders; especially since the onset of the pandemic.

What are the most common questions asked by your customers?

The most commonly-asked questions relate to where a domestic lift might be positioned and the size of the lift. Much like most home lift providers, at Stiltz Homelifts, advisors visit the customer in their home where they listen carefully to needs and concerns and provide clear information on sizing and discuss domestic lift positioning options, as well as answering any other questions as required.

Prospective customers can be invited to visit existing customers to view a lift … Stiltz call it a ‘test drive’. Additionally, home lifts are installed in several Stiltz office locations, and customers are welcome to make an appointment to visit to try the domestic lifts for themselves. This provides complete peace of mind and the comment of “I never realised quite how compact the lift actually is” can often be heard in our showrooms.

 

What’s the first step anyone should take when considering a home lift?

An important consideration, and one which few people are aware of, is having the reassurance of dealing with the manufacturer of the chosen domestic lift. This way, should any after sales support be needed, the customer can contact the lift manufacturer directly. There is nothing worse than finding out, once the home lift has been installed, that it has been manufactured by a third party. This can involve the frustration of calling different companies on a variety of phone numbers in order to find a solution to an issue they might be experiencing.

Aside from that, speak to at least three companies. See how responsive they are and how interested they are in you, the customer. Compare costs, compare the professionalism of the advisor who visits and of course compare costs. Do bear in mind though that, like with everything, the cheapest option may not always provide the best value for money.

 

What’s the minimum space required for a domestic lift?

Stiltz Homelifts manufactures two product ranges suitable for a variety of housing types and styles and to suit the specific needs of the potential user. Where space may be an issue, the compact 2-person Duo Homelift has one of the smallest footprints on the market for a domestic lift – less than a square metre (0.55m2). That’s equivalent to a small to medium-sized armchair.

 

What other considerations about internal space are necessary?

Many domestic through-floor lifts fix to load bearing walls. Thanks to the dual rail travel system, Stiltz domestic lifts are a completely self-supporting structure and therefore any issues with noise and vibration though party walls cease to be a problem.

Despite its good looks, some customers do not want visitors to see they have a lift installed. In addition to the standard, stairwell void, ThruCar and centre-of-room options, the flexibility of positioning with Stiltz extends to installing into a cupboard on both floors so the home lift is completely invisible unless in use.

From a practical point of view, always consider if there is sufficient space for safe entry and exit. This is particularly important if either now or in the future, wheelchair use and carer assistance will be required. Customers tell us they use their lift to carry heavier or bulkier items between floors – whether it is the laundry basket, shopping bags or holiday suitcases – so suitable access is always recommended.

 

Do most home lift companies also carry out installation or do customers need to find their own installer?

Sometimes customers prefer to carry out their own building work, especially if existing work is already taking place at their property. However, the majority of home lift manufacturers will offer an installation service as the process usually requires specialist expertise not readily available outside the industry. Always check that the price quoted by your preferred supplier includes installation costs.

 

What are the typical costs of a homelift in the UK?

From £15,000 – £50,000. Towards the lower end of the price bracket, you will find home lifts which have been developed specifically for the home. For instance, installation of a compact, modular Stiltz lift is simple with the unit ultimately plugging into a dedicated domestic socket. Where lifts have been adapted from commercial applications, such as hydraulic lifts; expect to pay towards the top end of the pricing bracket.

 

From a design point of view, what are the ‘must have features’ provided by Stiltz Homelifts?

A freestanding domestic lift which travels on its own slim vertical rails sounds like something from the future. But a Stiltz Homelift, does just that. The lift is finished in either a soft, warm grey colour or in white and all but the entry-level model home lift cars have clear sides. This helps the lift simply and elegantly blend into any style of home décor; contemporary or traditional.

Positioning the domestic lift in the corner of the room is usually the preferred option. But those looking to make a real statement can install their through floor lift in the centre of the room. Space permitting, a Stiltz Homelift is unique in that it can be installed within the turn of a staircase. With the addition of the (also unique) ThruCar option – where you enter and exit the lift from opposite sides, wheelchair users especially can find it extremely easy to navigate two or three storey homes.

 

What advice can you give to future-proof your choice of home adaptations?

Today’s accessibility solutions are far more integrated than simply installing a functional handrail. Innovative and exciting products are emerging which are designed to discreetly adapt your home. This means it is possible to unobtrusively future proof sooner, rather than waiting for the inevitable signs of reduced mobility. When this happens there has been – in the past – a tendency to rush to install a stairlift without much thought to the future. In reality, if a condition is diagnosed which is progressive or the onset of age-related mobility issues accelerate, a stairlift can be short-lived solution.

With a home lift, the benefit is immediate. No difficult transfers onto the chair, no balance concerns when getting off the stairlift chair at the top of the stairs. No need for two sets of mobility aids (sticks, walking frames, wheelchairs); one for upstairs and one for downstairs, cluttering up the hallways.

If a wheelchair IS likely to be required at some point in the future, the spacious Trio+ homelift model from Stiltz can fit a standard-sized wheelchair – or three people. It is all about careful planning and making sure the correct homelift is specified making it an integral element of any future-proofing plans.

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