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Helping my aging parents

allbetsoff

Registered User
Joined
May 16, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Philadelphia
My parents are in their late 80's and are in pretty good shape. No real mobility issues, just slowing down and some twinges in the hinges. My mom has had hip surgery, so she is a bit more tentative in her walking. They live in a duplex in NYC and use their upstairs all the time (their bedroom is on the first floor though.) They access the upstairs via a spiral staircase. I worry about that staircase. I've asked my parents to consider replacing it with an elevator, but they said they would prefer a stair chair lift. According to a NYC based stair lift company, their staircase is too narrow to accommodate a chair lift.

So I am curious about an elevator. Can someone please help me to understand code and egress? I understand you need two forms of egress and that an elevator doesn't count. Their apartment has a fire door exit on the second floor that leads to a landing for the stairwell (the stairs are for emergencies.) So I would imagine that is one egress? They also have two sets of exterior doors that exit from the second floor onto an exterior balcony that is part of their building's roof top. Would either of those doors be considered egress? What I would like for them to do is to remove the death trap stairs and replace it with a nice elevator. But I recognize that getting rid of these stairs would remove an egress source. There likely isn't another place for an elevator, but I can't say that for certain.

I'm sorry this is so long.
Thanks.
 

allbetsoff

Registered User
Joined
May 16, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Philadelphia
That would be ideal, but no-go. They they will reconsider an elevator if and when they get hurt and can't use the stairs. I disagree, but I have to respect their wishes and don't want to be patronizing, especially as they do get up. and down the stairs multiple times daily.
 

Robert

Registered User
Joined
Jan 29, 2016
Messages
319
Location
Pinole, CA
It might be cheaper to remodel the stairs wider, to accommodate the chair lift, then to install the elevator. Elevators are great for groceries and aging people and injuries, but as you say, respect their wishes and try a different lift company, or hire an architect to look at options of widening the stair.
 

Msradell

Sawhorse
Joined
Jul 23, 2011
Messages
1,197
Location
Louisville Kentucky
It might be cheaper to remodel the stairs wider, to accommodate the chair lift, then to install the elevator. Elevators are great for groceries and aging people and injuries, but as you say, respect their wishes and try a different lift company, or hire an architect to look at options of widening the stair.
As long as you have the space and don't have to rebuild the house to put in a shaftway, elevators are not that bad and they increase property values compared to a chairlift.
 
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