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Information Clearinghouse
Translating high quality research specific to better design and building practice
Translating high quality research specific to better design and building practice


What is it?

Many people find themselves wanting or needing to modify their home but uncertain how or whether they are allowed to do so. The DIYmodify App provides information and support for making changes to a home, for comfort, safety and easier living. Despite the importance Do-It-Yourself (DIY) home modification projects had for individuals, there was very little material available to assist people to do them.

The five popular home modification items used were: handheld showers; grab rails; handrails; threshold ramps and level shower access. While there were some good videos which focussed on the ‘installation’ part of the five home modifications, there was no material which stepped people through the choices available, what to look out for, how to maintain and clean them, nor what to do if the home was not owned or was under Strata Title.

The app has been designed using a co-design team of people who have had experience in doing their own Home Modifications. It has been funded by the NSW Government through Family and Community Services, Ageing Disability and Home Care, in conjunction with the Home Modification Information Clearinghouse (HMinfo).

Who is it for?

 The DIYmodify App is a free application (app) designed for people with disability, seniors and their carers, to do their own Home Modification. The app has been developed with several accessibility features included, such as a font that is easy to read in size and shape, colour intensity with maximised contrast, and clarity of structure.

Why did we build it?

DIYmodify is an app designed to help you do your home modification. This free app has been designed to be accessible and provide the information you need to successfully complete your own home modification.
The DIYmodify App gives advice on what to do if you are renting your house or your house/apartment is under Strata Title. It provides advice for seeking quotes for the actual installation of the home modification if you decide it might be best to get an outside contractor to help you.

How does it work?

Community members use the app to rate the liveability features and services of their local area, including walkability, health, and overall liveability. The Liveability App collects this information through audio, text, visual and image data. Local councils and planners can then make improvements to the design of the local area, based on the suggestions made.

  • There is no password required, only the email address is required.
  • The 3 basic functions of the app are: create pins on a map, add data to those pins, view all pins
  • You can view an instructional view here:

The Liveability App is available, free, for an iPhone/iPad or Android phone/tablet. Instructions and links for downloading the Liveability App are available in the Home Mods website.

System Architecture

We have developed an easy-to-use app that allows general users (including senior citizens) and council workers to enter information about "audit" objects in their built environment. The information is rich in format, including numeric scores to rate the object, text comments, photos and audio commentary. The audits are uploaded in real time using the mobile device's network connection and are stored centrally at a database server hosted at UNSW. The storage uses an underlying data model that enables easier aggregation, analysis and comparison with standards. The processed data can then be mapped and visualised (step 4) to provide feedback to councils so they can easily identify issues and trends that require remedial or pre-emptive action.

System architecture diagram