Age Scotland sought the views of people over the age of 55 between November 2019 to January 2020 on a range of matters to do with their current home and living situation, future housing plans, household energy use, the community they live in and would seek to be part of, and levels of loneliness.
The key findings of the report are:
- People aged 55+ are not actively making decisions about their future housing needs and that there is scope to improve this situation through communication from local or national government, as many people do not know if their current home will suit them in the future.
- There is a clear preference for single-story housing as people get older, and we are not convinced that the housing market is providing the choices that a lot of older people would like to see.
- There were good levels of awareness of Care and Repair Services across Scotland, however, this service could be even more beneficial to older people if it had greater resources available to help them adapt their homes.
- We found that 55% of respondents were not aware of the Scottish Government energy efficiency schemes, this demonstrates the need for more communication about these schemes as the requirements around more energy-efficient homes come into force.
When asked about Care and Repair services in Scotland, 77% of respondents said that they were 'very satisfied' and 15% said they were 'fairly satisfied' with the service they have received.
The report concludes:
There is good awareness of the Care and Repair Service but perhaps this needs greater investment to ensure that it can proactively encourage people to use its service ensuring they can adapt their homes (where possible) for them to live there for as long as possible. Many respondents considered that adapting their current home was their preference over moving home.
Robert Thomson, National Director, Care and Repair Scotland, said:
"We welcome the findings of this report although they come as no surprise to the world of Care and Repair. We have been calling on the Scottish Government to review the funding arrangements for Care and Repair so that there is a return to previous national core standards of service. We have lost services in three local authority areas in 2019 and the Covid-19 economy brings more uncertainty. However, the report clearly shows that the majority of older people in Scotland live in their own home and want to adapt and repair their property so that they can remain for as long as possible. The 'new normal' in Scotland should include investment to assist older people with repairs, adaptations and energy efficiency measures delivered through a client-centred service like Care and Repair".
A PDF version of the full report can be downloaded at: