Sheltered housing group increases age criteria to entice older people

  • Housing and Care 21 increases age of eligibility in line with retirement. Symbol Home From Hands Isolated On White

    One housing association is planning to restrict its sheltered housing schemes so that only people of retirement age will be able to stay in order to make it more attractive to prospective tenants, reports Inside Housing.

    Housing and Care 21 is raising the age of eligibility for its sheltered schemes from 55 to retirement age from September.

    Many social landlords own sheltered stock that is becoming increasingly difficult to let because of problems such as over-provision in some areas and flats that are in need of significant refurbishment.

    Bruce Moore, chief executive of the association, said the organisation was finding it hard to let its sheltered housing because the 55-plus age range was too broad, so prospective tenants would not expect to "share the same outlook on life" with their neighbours.

    "Being too broad a range of ages and outlooks make it very difficult because we [the landlord] are trying to be too many things to too many people. By making [the age range] clearer, it might be better for everybody and therefore more attractive."

    Domini Gunn, director of health and well-being at the Chartered Institute of Housing, said changes to sheltered stock needed to "be done in the context of local circumstances and local demand."

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