While home elevators were uncommon 20-30 years ago, they have been common place in upscale homes for the last 15 years. In fact, today when designing our client’s new homes we always plan for elevators; whether installed now or in the future. This space is usually a useful closet on both levels, until it becomes the shaft for the elevator.
We have also had a great many clients, whose homes were designed 20-30 years ago, come in and ask if an elevator can be built in their existing home. In nearly all cases this can be accomplished without too much physical disruption. In fact, there are a couple of good choices in addressing this need. One is a typical residential elevator with a shaft and another option is a pneumatic tube that can be installed as part of an existing stair rail or adjacent to a balcony landing. If this 2nd option works for your needs - heavy construction costs can be avoided.
A residential elevator installed runs approximately $30K, but does not include the cost to build the shaft and tie it into your existing home. If you are building a new home the shaft and related construction cost is minimal and part of the construction program. We just added an elevator in an existing home, the elevator begins in the garage, has a stop at a midlevel then ultimately lands at the 2nd floor in a newly created alcove off an upstairs office. Construction costs for the shaft and related tie-in can vary from $20K to $ ?K depending upon how complicated the location is, the structural integrity of the existing structure, and how much else the homeowner wants to achieve while adding the elevator.
If you have a physical need for an elevator a note from your doctor can provide tax benefits and possibly reduce or eliminate re-assessment of your property tax. Be sure to check into possible benefits before you add your elevator and get necessary forms for tax saving opportunities. Here’s a link - http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/deducting-medical-home-improvements.html