Housing with care

Housing with care

Sheltered (or retirement) housing

This is usually provided by councils and housing associations across the region. Sheltered (or retirement) housing is a practical step if you would like more security and companionship but don’t need to move into a care home.

In a sheltered (or retirement) housing scheme you would live independently in a flat or bungalow built especially for older people within a larger complex, sometimes around a garden or communal facility and linked to a central control centre for security. Some schemes have access to a resident or non-resident manager who provides support, advice and a link to services for older people.

East Dorset Housing Association has a range of housing specially designed to meet the needs of older people consisting of flats, a communal lounge, a laundry and gardens.

Schemes are especially suitable for very frail older people with flats and bungalows built with wheelchair access and level deck showers. All schemes have a visiting sheltered housing officer or scheme manager. There are schemes in Bournemouth, Wimborne, Ferndown, Corfe Mullen, West Moors and Verwood.

Visit: www.dorsetforyou.com/apply-for-housing for further information.

Poole Housing Partnership has a dedicated team of housing officers, who provide support to residents at the signing-up stage and throughout the duration of their tenancy. They spend a lot of time having direct contact with residents, visiting them at home and dealing with enquiries.

You can contact the housing officers by calling 01202 264444.

Adult Social Care can help you decide if sheltered housing can meet your needs and liaises with Bournemouth Borough Council’s Housing Services which manages sheltered housing schemes.

Contact Bournemouth Care Direct on 01202 454979 for more details.

Extra Care housing

Extra Care housing is a form of housing, similar to sheltered schemes, with self-contained accommodation together with some communal facilities. In an Extra Care scheme, instead of low level support traditionally provided by wardens in sheltered schemes, higher levels of care and support are provided on site for people with assessed needs by a designated team of care workers, who can be available 24-hours a day.

Extra Care allows people to retain their own tenancy and have care services delivered ensuring that they are able to remain safely in their own self-contained accommodation.

A new Extra Care housing scheme has been developed in Christchurch that will help older and disabled people to live independently. The scheme at Bure House, has been devised by East Dorset Housing Association in partnership with Christchurch Borough and Dorset County councils.

There are 41 one and two-bedroom flats as well as three specially adapted flats for disabled people available to rent. The scheme is designed to allow people who need physical help to live independently while having 24-hour care support.

Every resident has their own self-contained flat with their own front door, care and support when needed and the means to install safety devices – for example, to detect if a person has a fall. All flats have been designed to wheelchair standards and include fitted kitchens, walk in showers, central heating, double glazing and smoke alarms.

Anyone interested in living at Bure House should contact Christchurch Borough Council on 01202 495000 to see if they are eligible. If so, they will be invited to make an application. Part of the application process will include an assessment of their needs.

Most of the schemes available to rent in Poole are provided by Borough of Poole or local housing associations. Allocation of these properties is usually through the Council’s Housing Register. You will need to speak to Housing and Community Services on 01202 633805 to establish whether you are eligible for consideration for this type of housing.

People are expected to show a degree of housing need, this can be due to unsuitability of their present home for medical or social reasons. In addition, Adult Social Care will need to consider your ability to secure alternative accommodation by taking into account your savings and equity, if you are a homeowner.

Some housing associations will take an application from you directly and may help you even when Adult Social Care may not. A list of local housing associations is available from Housing and Community Services.

Properties are also available to buy. The price and types of property available to buy can vary considerably. To find out more about schemes available, locally and throughout the country, you should contact Age UK on telephone: 01202 523300.

In early 2011 an Extra Care housing facility opened in Poole – Delphis Court has been developed as part of the new Poole Quarter developments and provides a purpose-built facility for people who need a higher level of care and support and want to maintain their independence in their own home.

Delphis Court offers 45 flats in a mixture of one and two bedrooms, every resident will have their own self-contained flat with their own front door. Responsive support is available 24 hours a day and where appropriate, safety devices can be installed within flats to support people to live independently. Anyone interested in living at Delphis Court should contact Housing and Community Services within the Borough of Poole on 01202 633805.

Self-contained apartments with extra care and support on site are located in several developments in the town. High standards of accommodation complement communal facilities where you can relax and meet other residents. Specialist care staff are available to provide services to meet assessed needs. The latest technology is also available to ensure your safety and security.

Bournemouth Borough Council works in partnership with housing associations, the NHS, local doctors and pharmacies to support your wellbeing. To find out more contact Bournemouth Care Direct on 01202 454979.

Housing and support for younger adults

There are a range of care homes catering for younger adults with learning difficulties, physical or sensory impairments or mental health issues. There is also a range of housing options you could explore.

If you are thinking about a care home placement, seek advice from social and health care professionals about your needs. Does the home provide opportunities to learn and maintain skills, and opportunities to move on into living in the community? What are the home’s links with specialist staff in the community services? Use the care homes checklist on page 41 when visiting potential homes which includes helpful questions to ask.

Are you happy living at home? Would you like a little more independence with help when you need it? What are your housing options? You could:

  • Continue living with your family – If your home is specially adapted and you receive the practical and emotional support needed, you may prefer to stay at home. It’s also convenient if your college or job is nearby.
  • Move into supported living accommodation – This offers a level of independence and the chance to live alone or meet other people in similar situations. Help from a visiting care assistant is available and usually nursing care is provided nearby.
  • Rent a place – You can apply for council housing which is usually cheaper than renting privately. There could be a waiting list and you must fully explain your housing needs. Local housing associations may also be able to help. Ask your council housing department for a list. If you want to rent privately, look in your local newspaper for ‘To Let’ advertisements. Housing Benefit, if you’re entitled to it, might reduce your rent. Direct Payments can also help, ask your local authority for details and see page 4.
  • Buy your own home – Can you afford it? Are you able to live on your own? You could think about ‘part buying’ and ‘part renting’ a place from a housing association.
  • Move into a care home – If you want to leave home but are not ready to live alone, care homes can meet your personal needs and offer appropriate support. Adult Social Care and Health will contribute if you are eligible and if they agree the care home meets your needs. If your chosen home costs more than usual, you may get some help but you must pay the rest.
  • When living independently you may require some adaptations around the house. You can choose housing that’s specially adapted. There are organisations that specialise in providing this sort of accommodation including Livability (formerly John Grooms) and the Accessible Housing Register.

Tel: 0207 452 2000 for general enquiries
Email: info@livability.org.uk
Web: www.livability.org.uk

Accessible Housing Register
Tel: 0774 911 9385
Email: conradh@accessible-property.org.uk
Web: http://accessible-property.org.uk

New homes that have been built since 1999 should be fully accessible to disabled people. However, if you choose an older home, there are a number of adaptations that could make it easier for you to use. These include wider doorways; a downstairs toilet; bathroom equipment including handrails, a walk-in bath, electronic bath seat; kitchen adaptations including lower working surfaces; lower level light switches; easy-to-use controls for heating; a stairlift; security intercom at the front door and ramp access to the garden. You should also think about the general access to your home.