Adapting the homes of older people: A case study of costs and savings
Lansley, P., McCreadie, C., Tinker, A., Flanagan, S., Goodacre, K. and Turner-Smith, A. (2004) Adapting the homes of older people: A case study of costs and savings. Building Research and Information, 32 (6). pp. 468-483. ISSN 0961-3218
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1080/0961321042000269429
Meeting the demand for independent living from the increasing number of older people presents a major challenge for society, government and the building industry. Older people's experience of disabling conditions can be affected by the design and layout of their accommodation. Adaptations and assistive technology (AT) are a major way of addressing this gap between functional capacity and the built environment. The degree of adaptability and the differences in the average cost of adaptation of different types of property are large and there is major variation within property type. Based on a series of user profiles, it was found that a comprehensive package of adaptations and AT is likely to result in significant economies arising from a reduction in the need for formal care services. This finding is sensitive to assumptions about how long an individual would use the adaptations and AT, as well as to the input of informal care and the nature of their accommodation. The present study, which focused on social housing, has implications for how practitioners specify ways of meeting individual needs as well as providing a case to support the substantial increase in demand for specialist adaptation work.