Step 4: Setting SMART Goals

Smart Goals written on chalkboard

An important step in making your home usable is setting a goal. If you set a goal you are more likely to succeed in that goal. The best goals are SMART. Take a few minutes to review what makes a goal SMART. At the end of this section, you can set a SMART home usability goal based on the home usability need you identified in the previous section.

Smart goals are: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound

(S) Specific – A specific goal states exactly what needs to change.  “Change my door knob to a lever” is a specific goal. “Make it easier to get into my apartment” is less specific.

(M) Measurable – A goal is measurable if you can count it.  “Add some light” to my kitchen is not a measurable as “Change my light bulb to a 100 watt equivalent bulb.”

(A) Attainable – A goal is attainable if you can achieve it.

(R) Relevant – To be realistic a goal must be possible for you given the time and resources you are willing to put toward the goal.

(T) Time Bound – A goal is time bound if you put it in a specific time frame, like “by May 1st”.  Saying, someday I’ll reach my goal is less effective.  When your goal is tangible you have a better chance of making it specific and measurable and thus attainable.

SMART goal examples:

  • In the next three weeks I will install lever handles on my bathroom sink.
  • Within the next month, I will get a grab bar installed in my shower.
  • In the next 3 months I will get estimates from 2 contractors and hire one to install a ramp at my front door.

Extra goal setting tips:

  • Forming a goal statement following the SMART strategies will help you to create a plan for reaching your goal
  • Be prepared for set backs. Remember complicated difficult goals may have delayed or extended timelines. Don’t get discouraged.
  • Some of the most difficult accomplishments may actually seem easy because they are important.

Light Bulb Write your home usability goal in your home usability program plan on page 3.

Now that you have identified home usability issues and understand your role as self-advocate in the process, you’re ready to begin working towards the SMART goal you wrote.

Step 5: Your Home Usability Network