There may be a variety of housing options in your area.
- House exchange – You may agree to a house swap with another tenant in a suitable property provided the council gives permission.
- Adapted properties- these are usually council houses which have previously been adapted for another disabled person. They may not meet all of your needs but they are worth considering and viewing if they are offered as a solution. The council are usually willing to further adapt the property if necessary. You need to apply to be on the council housing list and have a needs assessment to establish your level of priority on a points system. As with most councils across Scotland there are long waiting lists and a shortage of housing stock in general, adapted properties in particular. Medical reasons for adapted housing will increase your chances of more points. Ask your doctor if he/she will write on your behalf.
- Amenity Housing – this type has some features such as non slip flooring, additional grab rails in bathrooms, raised electricity sockets or more space in each room if you require a lot of equipment. They do not have any alarm or warden.
- Retirement Accommodation – these are usually privately built communities for the “fit older person” They are useful if you are looking to sell your own home and downsize to a smaller property without having to cope with gardening or maintenance. Design features will vary so be sure what your requirements are now and what you may need in future for example a walk in shower, space to use a walking aid.
- Sheltered Housing– This type has adapted bathrooms, and either a warden on site or are linked to a twenty four hour remote warden. You will require a needs assessment for local authority sheltered properties. Sheltered accommodation can be rented from the local authority, bought privately or managed by a housing association on a rental or part ownership basis. The size and facilities may vary from bed sitting rooms, studio flats, bungalows, apartments or houses. They may have additional security features and door intercoms. Many will have laundry rooms, communal lounges, guest rooms for visitors to hire, communal gardens and some offer social activities. There may be additional service charges and repair charges even if you buy sheltered properties. Always get financial and legal advice before you buy. Look for the NHBC sheltered housing code for new build sheltered homes which should give you a ten year “Buildmark Cover” warranty.
- Extra Care/ Assisted Living/ Supported Accommodation – This is similar to sheltered housing but with some care services also provided. They are ideal for those who wish to remain independent and do not require a care home but who need some help to stay at home. Some have support services twenty four hours to assist with personal care or emergencies. Some are specially designed for people who have developed memory and planning problems or for physically disabled people.
- Housing Associations and Cooperatives – These are non profit organisations which offer rental homes. They may be linked to charitable organisations or local societies. The properties they offer will vary but many have adapted housing.