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Andrew Skerratt discusses the use of Technology in Accomodation reports
  • Jun 10, 2020
  • Latest News

Before the pandemic, remote assessments were considered a last resort. Visiting a Claimant’s home brings with it risks that did not previously exist in the same way before.

Accommodation needs experts have had to think of alternative ways of seeing someone’s home without actually being there.

Current technology has provided us with tools to see Claimants via video link. The images we see on our screens can give us an indication of the rooms and layout in a residential property. The internet is increasingly enabling us to see high-quality images of properties from ground level and above. For instance, Google Earth even has a ruler that can be used to determine lengths of objects or distances between objects. It is possible to use drones to take even better external images of properties without the need to step foot on one.

However, when it comes to capturing good quality information of inside properties, the question is how one can obtain this without entering a property. Estate agents’ details help us to a certain degree, but invariably they tend to be unreliable as a source of information that accurately shows the floor layout of properties.

For some time, measuring devices have made the task of measuring the inside of a home easier. Construction professionals commonly use electronic measuring devices to record measurements quickly and apply the information gathered in order to create images of rooms. This is a skill that a professional in this field is trained to do accurately. It would be unreasonable to expect an untrained individual to provide the information required accurately.

However, technological advances, in particular software design, could change the future. I have recently become acquainted with the Application ‘PLNAR’ on my mobile phone, which enables an untrained person to measure rooms in their home to a high standard. The App is designed to be used by anyone not only to measure a room quickly and easily but to provide images in 3D with the information gathered. The images created from the straightforward instructions can even show doors and windows. Additionally, the individual rooms can be linked together to show the complete layout of a home. The information can be saved in a file which can then easily be transferred electronically in an email.

While there is still some way to go before remote assessments can be relied upon fully entirely, from what I have seen throughout my research during this pandemic, perhaps it will not be too long before all the information gathered that one needs to provide accurate and reliable reports, can be obtained without the need to travel many miles to step inside someone’s home.

SPS Consulting (UK) Limited  has advised on the accommodation needs of disabled individuals for over 17 years. The business is highly experienced in preparing Claimant, Defendant and Joint Accommodation Needs Reports on personal injury and medical negligence claims. The Founder of the business, Andrew Skerratt, has been involved in over 900 cases over a 20-year period. We pride ourselves in producing high-quality evidence on cases of great value. We regularly identify suitable properties in property finding exercises depending on the needs of individuals, and we expand our involvement by preparing designs with estimates of cost. When required, we also provide project management services to ensure their specific objectives are met.