Property News > Calls for National Strategy to Build Homes Suited for the Aging Population
Calls for National Strategy to Build Homes Suited for the Aging Population
When we look at the housing crisis we tend to think of the first-time buyers that are needed and getting them onto the property ladder. While this is a major concern, there is also a fact that many existing homes don’t provide for the needs of an aging population.With an injection of funding to build new housing, now would be a good time to look at the future needs of older people. A new report from the House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee notes that there needs to be a strategy for housing that fits the needs of the older people in society.Not only is it the case that homes need to be safe for older people, but these people also need help with looking after their homes. This includes big bills that can come with upkeep and general needs, and the dangers of cowboy builders always looking to take advantage. There also needs to be an advice system that can help them with mortgage and equity release, which is also something older people tend to look into, to release the cash hidden in their properties.With a focus with advice in mind, the report notes that a properly funded telephone advice service needs to be put into place to bring all the information for older people together. This is from anything from repairs and heating, to options to moving for homes for older people, or even care options. There is also the need for a handyman service for older people that can be trusted, to protect them from cowboy builders.One step forward would be to make amendments to the National Planning Policy Framework that encourages development of more housing for older people. Councils would also have to identify a proportion of new housing specifically built for the purpose of housing the older generation and making their lives easier. This includes common issues such as extra care, retirement, sheltered housing and accessibility. These builds would be across the social and private sectors.Another issue of course is when people have to move, there has to be ways that the older generation overcome the barriers of moving homes. An idea here was to create an accreditation for companies that can provide tailored services to older people.With a nation of people that are aging, dealing with the issue of housing for the older generations will become an issue. Dealing with this and helping them is something that should not be ignored. The younger first-time buyers are important of course, but so is providing homes for the older home buyers too who are looking to find more suitable housing and free up homes that could then be passed to younger people seeking homes.