The Social Value of Sheltered Housing

Demos has been undertaking research into the social value of sheltered housing by bringing together all the qualitative data relating to the savings generated to health and social care services.

The report, which is a review of existing evidence, found that sheltered housing saves the UK’s cash-strapped NHS and social services at least £486m per year.

Sheltered housing provides independent, self-contained housing for older people, with wardens, alarms or other on-site staff to provide 24-hour support and security. Demos identifies the savings to NHS and emergency and social care services from sheltered housing as at least:

  • £300m per year from reduced length of in-patient hospital stays
  • £12.7m per year from fall prevention by residents of sheltered housing
  • £156.3m per year from prevention of falls which result in hip fractures
  • £17.8m per year from reduced loneliness experienced by residents

Commenting on the findings, the report’s author, Claudia Wood, Chief Executive at Demos said:

“Sheltered housing for older people is a low-cost, high-impact service which saves the state huge sums of money. Considering the NHS is currently under enormous financial pressure, capping the Housing Benefit of those who live there seems to be another self-defeating benefit cut”

Commenting on the findings, Howard Nankivell, Operations Director at Anchor Housing said: 

“This research demonstrates the valuable role that sheltered housing plays; providing enormous benefits for individuals while saving money for the state. It is crucial that we in the sector work with government to achieve their objectives and secure appropriate housing for the older people of today and tomorrow”

The full report can be downloaded here.

This research has been undertaken in partnership with Anchor, Hanover and Housing and Care 21.