What is an Accessible Home?

Accessible, inclusive or universal design allows for livability features when a home is first designed and built, rather than waiting for any unplanned needs to arise.

Accessible living features can cater for young families with children, people with injuries as well as seniors and people living with disabilities. Or they can simply add an element of space and ease of access for those living in a home to enjoy every day.

These design features are much easier and more efficiently and effectively incorporated at the design stage of a home, rather than having to face renovations later on.

They include:

  • A safe continuous and step-free path of travel from the street entrance and / or parking area to a dwelling entrance that is level.
  • At least one, level (step-free) entrance into the dwelling.
  • Internal doors (870mm) and corridors (1000mm) that facilitate comfortable and unimpeded movement between spaces.
  • A toilet on the ground (or entry) level that provides easy access. (1200mm clearance in front of WC)
  • A bathroom and shower that provides easy access with a larger, ‘step-free’ shower recess.
  • Reinforced walls around the toilet, shower and bath to support the safe installation of grab rails at a later date

No-step entry, wider hallways, concrete paths around the home, are all simple yet very effective livability features, to make homes easier to access, navigate and live in. We are living longer, and to design your home to be more versatile and to better meet the changing needs of the occupants over their lifetimes, quite simply, just makes sense.

In time, we believe these features will be a standard item and Martin Locke Homes is proud to be the market leaders in this field. As an owner of a Martin Locke Home, you too would be future-proofing your investment.

universal design

Martin Locke Homes is a member of the Centre for Universal Design Australia. 

The aim of the organisation is to 'universalise' design in order to create a more inclusive world. The principles of Universal Design are being implemented internationally to bring about changes in design thinking so that all people are considered regardless of age, capability or background. 

More information on the Centre for Universal Design Australia can be found at their website http://universaldesignaustralia.net.au/ 


The facts are indisputable that new-home designs must adapt to meet the changing needs of our community.

As new home builders we must cater for our aging population as well those with specific needs. Coupled with the introduction of the NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) there is an emerging challenge to meet these growing market segments.

There is no doubting that homes that have incorporated Accessible Features at the design stage will be in higher demand into the future. These homes will meet the needs of every person regardless of their age or ability and feel more spacious and safer to life in.


Accessible doesn’t mean unfashionable or sterile. Modern accessible design is incorporated seamlessly into our new-home designs to add to the amenity AND aesthetics of the home. We use the latest design concepts and trends and merge them with accessible design features to create beautiful and functional homes to suit any family.


Livable housing Australia’s 16 design guidelines were introduced mid-2010 to help builders and designers achieve more livable homes. The goal is for every new home to be built to the minimum silver level standard by 2020.

Find out more at Livable Housing Australia


The National Disability Insurance Scheme is the new way of providing individualised support for eligible people with permanent and significant disability, their families and their carers. The National Disability Insurance Scheme is the insurance that gives us all peace of mind. Disability could affect anyone - having the right support makes a big difference.

More information is available via the Cootharinga North Queensland website or on the NDIS website.

Martin’s Inspiration for Accessible Living Homes

Martin has been building homes for Cootharinga North Queensland since 2009. Cootharinga is one of North Queensland’s largest and most respected service providers for those living with disabilities. It has been through Martin’s solid and ongoing relationship with Cootharinga, and seeing first-hand the need for more accessible homes, that Martin has been inspired to include accessible features as standard in all new homes he builds.

It now only makes good business sense as a builder, but also for anyone purchasing a home in this market. A Martin Locke Home with Accessible Features already built-in will ensure when the time comes to sell or rent your home, you will have a point of difference over 1000’s of homes that are currently on the market.


The Martin Locke Homes Team is passionate about designing and building accessible homes and accommodation for those who truly need them in our community.

Our goal is to partner with Community Organisations throughout Townsville and North Queensland to ensure those in need have the chance to live the life they choose.

Martin Locke Homes is registered to undertake work within the NDIS for both home re-modelling and rectification as well as participate as a provider of Specialist Disability Accommodation.

Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) refers to accommodation for people who require specialist housing solutions, including to assist with the delivery of supports that cater for their extreme functional impairment or very high support needs. More information is available here: https://www.ndis.gov.au/specialist-disability-accommodation

If you are a Community Organisation requiring a skilled and experienced builder or simply would like some more information on how we can help, please contact our team.