Options and facilities for older people

Last Updated: 6 March 2024

Remaining in your own home

If you wish to remain within your own home for as long as possible there may be help available for you. If you’re an owner occupier or live in social housing you may be able to get your home adapted to suit your needs, this may be by getting grab rails, a stair lift or in some cases a wet room installed.

You would need to contact Adult Social Services on 01539 713 378 and ask for an Occupational Therapist assessment to be done. They will ask you a series of questions and from the information you give they may make a further appointment to see an Occupational Therapist or they may refer you to Age UK.

If you do need to get any work done to adapt your property you may be entitled to financial assistance with this via a disabled funding grant.

If you live in a private rented property you will not be able to get it adapted without the consent of the owner. If this request is refused you can put an application on Cumbria Choice so you can apply for social housing.

You may also be able to get a care package to support you with daily activities such as shopping or housework.

Sheltered housing may be a suitable option for older people who want to continue to live independently.

Sheltered housing

Sheltered housing gives older people the independence of having their own flat with the security of having an alarm system and a warden. The flats are usually all self‐contained units, which often has a communal social area.

It is also possible to find sheltered housing to rent or to buy.

The sheltered housing staff should check on you every day and be able to assist you in an emergency. They would not be expected to provide care or do things like shopping.

Additional care in sheltered housing

If you require additional services, you can still have care provided by the social services department, such as meals on wheels, or someone to come in to get you up in the morning, or to help you wash, or do your housework.

Alternatively, you could move into very sheltered housing or extra care sheltered housing, where services such as meals and personal care are usually provided.

Sheltered housing providers

A number of housing providers have sheltered housing schemes:

Buying sheltered housing

It is sometimes possible to buy a flat in a sheltered housing complex. If you already own your home, it may be easier for you to buy than to rent, as home owners are usually not given priority on waiting lists to rent from the council or a housing association.

Further information about sheltered housing

Further information about sheltered housing is available from Age UK.