Can You Retrofit A Lift Inside Your Home

Good news. You don’t have to relocate and uproot your whole life just to have a lift in your home! A retrofit is possible, in almost any situation. You can easily retrofit a lift inside your existing residence (space permitting) or, if that’s not an option, you can install one on the exterior of your home.

Read on to discover everything you need to know about a retrofit including:

  • What you should consider
  • What requirements need to be met
  • If your house is actually suitable. 
After this article you’ll be even more excited (and confident) about your future lift than Buddy the Elf. Don’t try this at home, folks!

What to consider

  1. Space Requirements
    You need to work out where in your house you can actually install a residential lift. A good lift company will be able to help evaluate your home and provide recommendations, but it’s helpful to think about yourself too. Do you want your lift to have access to the garage to get in and out of the house easily, to the bedroom or most frequently used areas of your home? If you feel like you have just no possible space to fit a lift, you can even have a shaft installed on the outside of your home, so as to not take up any extra space. Read our full guide to space requirements and choosing a location for your home lift here
  1. Council Requirements for home elevators
    These are the council requirements for external home lift placement in Western Australia. Your lift cannot be installed:
    1. Close to the boundary of your property 
    2. Over a water board or any kind of water table 
    3. Above underground car parks (unless going to the car park) as there needs to be space below ground for the lift pit
  1. Personal Taste and Needs
    Get a feel for what type of designs you like, and what you don’t… because your preferences will impact your space requirements. Quickly squiz at some lift designs online to see what can work within the existing aesthetic of your residence. No need to make any hard or fast decisions just yet, but it’s important to keep this in the back of your mind for when you get further down the line.
Jurien Bay house with retrofit lift shaft on the outside.
Here’s a lift shaft built on the outside of an existing home in Jurien Bay, north of Perth.

The next steps for a home elevator retrofit

So you’ve looked at some elevators online, got a feel for what you like and you’re ready to set things into motion. This is the process of your home lift retrofit, from quote to completion.

  1. Choose your home lift and get a quote
    Head down to an elevator showroom and check out all of the lift options in person and choose all your swatches, inclusions and add-ons. A good lift provider will help walk you through all of your options and explain to you the different features. For more information on how to design your home lift, check out our guide to great home elevator design
  1. Sign on the dotted line
    When you’re happy with all your options, your provider will write up a contract and should organise a dedicated appointment with you to go through it, and answer any questions you may have, to ensure that you’re completely satisfied before you sign. Here you will review: 
    1. Your lifts specifications
    2. Finishes and design of your elevator
    3. What inclusions come with your lift and what add-ons you would like
    4. Schedule and payment information, so you know exactly what is going to happen next, when and how much it costs 
    5. Any associated builders or contractors works 
  1. Engineered lift drawings and designs
    After the contract is signed and deposit is paid, your engineered lift drawings will be drawn up with all the specifications and technical details needed. This usually takes 4-6 days
  1. Elevator package
    Your components are ordered, manufactured and ready to install
  1. Site delivery and installation
    Exciting times ahead, now it’s time for the build of your personal lift to get started. Your parts will be delivered to your home and will start being installed. The full installation takes approximately 2-4 weeks
  1. Comprehensive testing
    Before we handover, your new home lift, extensive electrical and safety testing is done to ensure that your lift is safe and operational
  1. Handover
    Woohoo! It’s time to celebrate because the wait is over, your new lift is ready for use.
home lift renovations perth - west coast elevators
A lift retrofit will future-proof your home, meaning you can live where you love, even more.

Cost to install an elevator in your existing home

Cost is of course, an important factor to think about with your home lift retrofit. On average our home lifts cost between $35,000 and $65,000. This is influenced by things such as lift style, lift size, how high your lift needs to travel, additional features and construction needs. 

Find more details about the factors that influence the cost of your home lift here, or come down to our Perth showroom to have a peek. While you’re there, we can discuss the best possible lift placement in your home.