Key proposals & consultations
Fixing our Broken Housing Market (the Housing White Paper) was published in February 2017. It talks about providing and delivering greater choice of housing for older people and finding ways of overcoming the barriers that deter older people from moving. Government is consulting on the proposals for changes to planning policy and legislation. The consultation period has now ended and RHG’s response is available to read here. A new NPPF was issued in July 2018 (see below) but it has not included any additional measures to diversify the housing market through by supporting provision of older people’s housing.
We are disappointed that the recent consultation on changes to the planning system also contains little to encourage the development of housing for older people. We continue to liaise and lobby government for more good quality choices for older people.
Good practice: planning and economic policy
National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) (paragraph 61) is clear that all local councils should know and plan to meet the housing needs of their older residents
National Planning Policy Guidance (NPPG) (paragraph 020) states that “the need to provide housing for older people is critical as people are living longer lives and the proportion of older people in the population is increasing”. It emphasises the importance of assessing and planning for the housing needs of older people in all tenures and the wider policy benefits of downsizing.
An Ageing Nation – Are we planning for our future? RHG member Barton Willmore reports that, even in areas with large and growing older populations, few local authorities have clear policies for housing for older people. “There is not only a shortage of specialist accommodation, but a shortage of family homes that remain occupied by older generations. …it is critical to our recovery from the current housing crisis and the future of appropriate and appealing retirement accommodation to look at how this issue might be effectively tackled.” This report looks at how policy and product might be informed and developed, looking at projections, policy in practice and how we should be responding.
Top of the Ladder – Demos’ latest housing report provides detailed evidence of the benefits of increasing the supply of housing for older people. “A lack of choice of suitable homes to downsize into is having a negative effect not just on older people’s health and wellbeing, but on the rest of the housing chain.”
The Benefits of Retirement Housing
The following publications include research and information on the benefits of Retirement Housing for individuals, their families, the community, as well as from a health & social care perspective. The first 3 reports in the list below are from longitudinal research into whether there are benefits to be gained from the provision of Extra Care Homes.