Sustainable planning for housing in an ageing population

HousingAgedThis 2008 publication sets out the need to recohgnise the changing demographic and the need to include appropriate homes for the ageing.

It notes there is a recognised lack of choice of appropriate housing for older people. For example:
– New-build housing is often dominated by flats and small properties. These may be less appealing to older homeowners who might otherwise be interested in downsizing.
– Relatively few new houses are built to Lifetime Homes standards, despite the Audit Commission recommending the standard as representing best long-term value in 1998.24
– There is a significant shortage of leasehold retirement housing options, which have a valuable role to play alongside specialist, social stock.
So –

  • Is new housing (social rented and private sector) being built to Lifetime Homes standards?
  • Have the housing needs of older people been identified? (E.g. properties to ‘downsize’ into and appropriate retirement housing.)
  • Are suitable sites close to existing amenities and services being provided for older people’s housing, so encouraging ‘active ageing’ and social engagement for future residents? Have health and social care been involved in planning supported housing provision?
  • Are older people being involved in the planning and design of new homes?


  • Are developments still going ahead on a short-term basis, with little or no consideration of a strategic goals around planning for an ageing population?


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