Updated: Mar 1
Living Tiny can keep you closer to home, too.
At Retiring Tiny we spent quite a bit of time singing the benefits of small living. In other blog posts I've shown you that having a small house can help you take advantage all the world has to offer-with a tiny house and a truck you can get out and see the world in your retirement.
I recently came across Wheel Pad. The Wilmington, VT-based company developed a tiny module consisting of an accessible bedroom, bathroom, and entry that can aid in the recovery of a person who has become recently injured.
Eight years ago, Riley Poor, 25 was paralyzed in a swimming pool accident and was forced to live in a hotel because he couldn't find wheelchair-accessible housing. His godparents, Joseph Cincotta, principal at LineSync Architecture, and Julie Lineberger, the firm's CEO, eventually helped Riley retrofit a house to his needs. But they wished they'd been able to make Riley's life a little easier during his long recovery.
"What if there had been a room and accessible bathroom attached to his mom's or dad's house so Riley could have been with family while he recuperated?' Joseph wondered aloud over dinner with Julie and Riley one night.
"What if there had been a room and accessible bathroom attached to his mom's or dad's house so Rileygld have been with family while he recuperated?' Joseph wondered aloud over dinner with Julie and Riley one night.
The LineSync Architecture staff developed a concept that would give wheelchair users a private bedroom and bathroom as well as access through a door to a loved one's house. The resulting blueprint soon became Wheel Pad: a 200-square-foot universally accessible space built on a flatbed trailer, delivered nearly anywhere in the United States, that connects to the electricity and plumbing of an existing house. "When you're able to be at home during recovery, you remain included in your family's day-to-day. You feel more motivated to get back into your routine,"says Julie.
Riley, other wheelchair users, and medical professionals were all consulted to perfect plans for Wheel Pad's footprint and other details like the placement of handrails and electrical outlets. One of the most innovative features is a built-in track from the bedroom to the bathroom for a lift, a device caregivers rely on to hoist and move people with mobility issues. Julie says Wheel Pad can help injured veterans, aging parents, and others.
In 2016, the first fully functional Wheel Pad prototype was constructed. The company continues to receive orders for its units, which can be leased for $2,000 a month or purchased for $75,000. Wheel Pad staff and local contractors can deliver and install each unit.
Here at Retiring Tiny we are excited to share that Wheel Pad is currently developing an Accessible Tiny House! This will be slightly larger than their current model, and come complete with a small kitchenette. We will keep you updated for sure on their progress, but if you have more questions, do reach out to Wheel Pad's RJ Adler