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Social Housing Bungalows - not eligible as under 55

MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
Hi,

I've just applied for social housing as I'm struggling in our current house due to mobility issues. I applied for a bungalow, but have been told I can't apply for any of the vacant ones because I am not over 55 - surely that can't be allowed?
There are only two properties showing as eligible for me, both flats, neither are accessible or in the town I live in - the nearest if 18 miles away, I also won't move into a flat as there's no way our dog would settle if someone was upstairs making a noise.

Unfortunately there's no council housing, as all stock was transferred to a housing association in the 90s and a private bungalow would be £300pm more than we can get on Housing Benefit.

I'm not sure what else we can do, so any advice is welcome.
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Replies

  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    Everyone has to make decisions and none of us can demand and get everything we want on our own terms, of course.  Nobody is expecting you to re-home your dog.   Why should you?   You can keep a pet dog or a pet horse, or ten, if you choose.  Why not?  It is entirely your own personal choice.  However,  keeping  your dog   will cost you £300 a month on top of the Housing Benefit you are extraordinarily fortunate to be given.   It is also is stopping you getting the flats which you are extraordinarily fortunate to have been offered.   A 90 year old couple, he a wheelchair user, were living in a Bournemouth bus shelter.  No private landlord and no council offer for them.  No housing benefit or welfare benefits either, because they had carefully saved up, after a thrifty lifetime of savings.   They had no private pension, no enhanced pension.   Having savings instead is regarded as the same as being Bill Gates.

    The rules about disabled housing are first and most wrong because nothing, nothing at all, should be allowed past planning consent as new build housing, unless it can be occupied for the lifetime of the building by people at all times of their lives, importantly, including when they have someone in the household who is disabled.
    Only by turning on a supply of the almost non existent national disabled-friendly housing stock will you or anyone begin to have the reasonable selection of housing others take for granted.


  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 2,965 Disability Gamechanger
    @Martynh hope you get something sorted.

    @newborn not sure I understand how you thought your post was helping anybody?
    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 7,417 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome 

    I live in housing association bungalow since I was 50 due to becoming wheelchair bound 

    I suggest you self refer for a care needs assessment on the Gov website 

    A OT will come and assess you and if they feel appropriate will recommend aids or need for suitable type housing 

    The report can then be sent to local housing and may allow you to then bid on bungalows if that is what is recommended 

    They may suggest adaptions to your current home 
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    HI,

    I would also 2nd the advice to refer yourself for a needs assessment, if you have't already done this.

    Adaptions maybe possible rather than moving house.

    Some housing associations have rules for bungalows and those under 55 aren't eligible. I can only imagaine that this is because there's such a shortgage of those across most of the country.

    As far as your dog is concerned i completely agree with you here! Pets are part of the family and we have them to love, not to abandon them when we move house because a landlord refuses pets. I have a cat and when i last moved house in 2019 there was no way on this earth would i move without him!



    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
    Thanks, I do have an appointment with neuro-rehab this week to discuss my needs, so I'll start there.
    I did try calling Social Services but haven't managed to get through yet, and no replies to emails.

    I'd rather crawl up and down stairs or go to the toilet in a bucket than give the dog away.

    I just can't see why age discrimination is allowed, especially when it comes to accessible housing.
  • Cher_ScopeCher_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,795 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Martynh 

    I have 3 cats who are like my children, so I understand how much you love your dog and how much he/she adds to your quality of life.  You need a home that meets all your needs and suitability for both your impairment and pet isn't too much to ask for in my opinion.

    Also, on the bigger picture @newborn makes a valid point in there being a clear lack of accessible housing, designed with all age ranges and body types in mind.  I hope it's not too distant a reality for these considerations to be mandatory in the planning stages of house building.

    Good luck with your neuro-rehab appointment and please keep us updated with how you get on :)
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  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    There is no unity of purpose in lobbying about housing from the users' point of view.   The developers have shedloads of gold to lobby.   It is in their interests to cut every corner, on eco standards, on safety and soundproofing and energy efficiency and on solar panels, heat recovery, water recovery,  green roofs and walls, balconies for everyone to access sun and plants, even when confined indoors, and of course, the space to turn a bariatric wheelchair means no home becomes unliveable for any occupant.   That same space makes lockdowns, crowded families, working from home, home schooling all the more bearable.   It allows for storage, for flexible use of the home, for a live-in carer or multi-generation living or lodger.  Disabled-friendly housing is friendly for everyone else, too.    What's not to love?   

     A person with a disabled- useable home will not necessarily need to go into a care home or institution, and will frequently need far less carer visits, because they can move freely all round their home.   A home ready for a disabled person will easily have hoist tracks fitted, so people will not need to remain in hospital.  It won't have doors too small to let furniture me moved in, or stretchers be moved out.  It will have as standard the type of loo which is standard in Japan, and which allows anyone with limited movement and strength, but still the ability to sit on the pan, to have independence and dignity because the loo itself does a wash and dry.

    We the  occupants, and the future generations who occupy the housing, are set in direct opposition to the lobbying developers, who would only need  to spend a comparatively minor amount extra, if disability is planned in from the outset, but who begrudge every penny of profit.    Against that, all that we, the general public have is numbers.   Young and old, fit and frail, all of us,  in our millions.  It doesn't matter if we are paying mortgage or rent, we want a roof over our head.  It doesn't matter if we are 100% athletic, and so is everyone who ever lives with us or ever visits us. Sooner or later, the building we live in will need to be usable by a person with reduced mobility.

    Everyone who doesn't die young gets old.  Everyone who thinks they are safely fit and athletic today is only one accident away from short term or permanent injury.   Everyone in the world is either disabled or a T.A.B. (Temporarily Able Bodied)   So what do we do?  Sit grumbling and let the lobbying developers construct Grenfells, that's what.   Sit  competing against others in equal or greater need, for the tiny number of accessible units of housing, that's what. 

    One of the Scope mods put a notice on this board drawing attention to a government public consultation on exactly this topic.  Nobody took any interest.   
    (Councils had obviously protested they couldn't cover social service demand, caused mainly because there is simply nowhere for disabled people to live without needing constant visits, because they cannot get in and out of their bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms unaided and without being able to turn a wheelchair or get up and down stairs. At last, they were wondering if somebody ought to think about the occupants of housing, who don't lobby local and central government to permit the lowest standards of building.   But  even Scope readers couldn't  be bothered to accept the invitation to change things.) 
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    To the O.P., please don't add to Age Hatred and envy and trying to take away from others what tiny concession they have.  You are not a selfish person yourself, and so you too would be horrified if you had spent  much time on this issue, and knew a) that so little is available for extremely disabled b) so little is available for older people, who suffer both Ageism and Disablism at the same time, and are crushed and shoved aside by the sharp elbows and entitled, strident, overwhelming clamour from people who have dogs and children and who demand and insist they want bungalows  supposedly set aside for disabled elderly. 
    ( "To those who have not, shall be taken away the little they have".}


  • wilkowilko Member Posts: 2,194 Disability Gamechanger
    @newborn, quoting the bible sounds, looks good but no help. The local, regional and county councils are overwhelmed with applications for social housing and especially over 55 yr old disabled accommodation. In my own area where I have registered for a ground floor flat or bungalow I would have to move 20 plus miles or leave my dog and move into a social care setting. Neither my wife or I want or willing to do as we use both our two bedrooms for health reasons we have only been allowed a single bedroom accommodation, most are all electric heating, and the few that allow pets are town based no walking areas or facilities for charging and storing a large mobility scooter safely or securely or car parking nearby. There are long waiting lists for certain types of property’s.  Having had two OPs reports in the last two years has not got us further up the ladder. Sometimes we can’t be to picky in where we live and will have to be grateful for what we are offered.
  • Tori_ScopeTori_Scope Community Team Posts: 3,214 Disability Gamechanger
    Many councils seem to have online forms you can use to refer yourself for a needs assessment. Have you tried that instead @Martynh
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  • woodbinewoodbine Member Posts: 2,965 Disability Gamechanger
    @newborn i'm still not entirely sure how you think you are helping here? we try our best to help people not rail against the system.

    my advice is given freely and is correct to the best of my knowledge.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    I don't understand the need to mention care homes and institutions, when the question is about bungalows.... am i missing something here?
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    poppy where is the mention of care homes and institutions?
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    newborn said:

     A person with a disabled- useable home will not necessarily need to go into a care home or institution,
    There you go.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    That is a reason to ensure A L L new build is disability friendly.  It was the reason that, at last, someone in power began to take an interest in the real lives of real people living in the 'housing units' developers get allowed to build as cheaply as they can.   At last, financial self interest by the accountants in local councils,  who must pay for social care and care homes, began to balance against financial self interest by well funded developers' lobbyists.

    The need for accessible and liveable housing is not one ever before put forward.  Nor does anyone seem to care.  The Scope team did.   They posted the government  public consultation.   Few people showed a flicker of interest.   I doubt if more than half a dozen of the public will have bothered to fill in the question
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Your opinion wasn't relevant to the question asked, which was about bungalows.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • Cher_ScopeCher_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,795 Disability Gamechanger
    @newborn Thank you for your contributions and I can tell the issue of accessible housing is one you are rightly passionate about.  As not to de-rail this post, I'd encourage you to start a thread dedicated to this subject so we can discuss it more as a community.  There's much to be said and it's definitely worthy of it's own space  :)
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  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 7,417 Disability Gamechanger
    @newborn I think you are using the thread to put forward your strong views on accessible housing which while they are important are not really relevant to the original poster and may cause confusion 

    As suggested maybe start your own post which I think you have done before on this subject 
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 655 Pioneering
    The o.p. was about bungalows, which the author was annoyed to find are reserved for disabled elderly, not necessarily freely allocated to dog owners.
  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    Pets are part of a family and when someone moves house they usually take them with them because they are part of the family. I do not blame them at all for not wanting to move somewhere, where they can't take their beloved dog.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
    newborn said:
    The o.p. was about bungalows, which the author was annoyed to find are reserved for disabled elderly, not necessarily freely allocated to dog owners.
    I wasn't annoyed that they were allocated to disabled elderly and not pet owners, I have absolutely no idea how you came to that conclusion !

    They aren't reserved for disabled elderly, they are reserved for over 55+ (I'd hardly call 55 elderly!), and most do accept pets.

    What I was bothering me was that there's a mimimum age limit and that this is seen as perfectly fine legally, which means under 55 disabled people are pretty much limited to flats, and we have a dog that would bark non stop if there was noise from upstairs (but not from next door).

    There is a massive shortage of accessible properties, but I don't agree with restricting them by age, especially when anyone over 55 without need of an accessible property can apply for them (there's no requirement to have health or mobility issues or a disablility, you just have to be 55 or over).


  • janer1967janer1967 Community champion Posts: 7,417 Disability Gamechanger
    My neighbours live in a bungalow same as me they are a couple in their late 20s with no disability I am amazed really 

    There are so many elderly or disabled people needing this sort of housing how can it be right 

    They could live in any type of housing . It's not their fault they were allocated it but just shows the system is all wrong 
  • chiariedschiarieds Community champion Posts: 6,896 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Martynh - I'm sorry you're currently facing this dilemma, & hope your neuro-rehab appointment may prove helpful. I must admit I came across something a little similar several months ago. Not ever having looked at available accomodation for anyone before, I was somewhat shocked that there was next to no sheltered accomodation available in their vicinity unless you were 55+ (in some cases 60+). There was, which was good, new build accommodation for those with mental health by one housing association, but it seemed like it was incredibly difficult to find accommodation for someone younger than 55 with a physical disability in that sector too.
    It definitely seems 'wrong' that someone without a disability may get an accessible property solely by being aged 55+, so I share your frustration. Anyway please do kindly let us know how you get on following your appointment, & hope this is a way forward looking at your needs. :)
  • MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
    Many councils seem to have online forms you can use to refer yourself for a needs assessment. Have you tried that instead @Martynh
    Unfortunately mine don't, you have to phone them. Obviously won't covid they are under pressure and short staffed, but I do keep trying to call.
  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 Listener
    newborn said:
    The o.p. was about bungalows, which the author was annoyed to find are reserved for disabled elderly, not necessarily freely allocated to dog owners.
    Most Housing providers have a "No Pets" policy anyway, the Housing Assocation here do, otherwise I'd have a small dog, about 3 years ago one of my Neighbours had 2 dogs, a cat, and a Budgie, someone reported her (and no, it wasn't me) so she got the boot.

  • poppy123456poppy123456 Member Posts: 22,218 Disability Gamechanger
    I've always had cats and lived in rented properties for 18 years and never had any problems and i've lived in social housing and privately rented.
    Community champion and proud winner of the 2019 empowering others award. This award was given for supporting disabled people and their families for the benefit advice i have given to members here on the community.
  • MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
    newborn said:
    The o.p. was about bungalows, which the author was annoyed to find are reserved for disabled elderly, not necessarily freely allocated to dog owners.
    Most Housing providers have a "No Pets" policy anyway, the Housing Assocation here do, otherwise I'd have a small dog, about 3 years ago one of my Neighbours had 2 dogs, a cat, and a Budgie, someone reported her (and no, it wasn't me) so she got the boot.

    Pets are allowed in most social housing here, there are very few properties where they aren't allowed.
  • GarzaGarza Member Posts: 102 Pioneering
    i think the housing situation for disabled people is very challenging, I am a wheelchair user in a small 1 bed flat, I would love a bungalow or something slightly bigger, there is nothing in my local privately either in my price range or with the adaptions I would need and the council and housing associations have all said there is little to no chance of me getting a move 

    In terms of buying i dont think bungalows are being built that much any more which is a real shame
  • Ross_ScopeRoss_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,480 Disability Gamechanger
    Martynh said:
    Many councils seem to have online forms you can use to refer yourself for a needs assessment. Have you tried that instead @Martynh
    Unfortunately mine don't, you have to phone them. Obviously won't covid they are under pressure and short staffed, but I do keep trying to call.
    That's good @Martynh, I would urge you to keep trying. You would think that, especially in the current times, they would have an online form. Perhaps something to suggest to them when you finally get through? 

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  • bluesblues Member Posts: 6 Listener
    I moved into a housing association bungalow when I was 53, a young woman with a child with a disability lives in the one opposite to me. Where I live we're placed in bands according to eligibility, the properties are advertised and we have to apply for each one we're interested in, the property is then allocated to the person in the highest band applying who has been on the list the longest. Although I wasn't in the highest band I was offered a bungalow I'd applied for after a few weeks of being on the list, the problem was we aren't given the full address or allowed to look inside before making the application, the bungalow I was awarded was unsuitable for my disability and I had to turn it down which meant I wasn't allowed to apply for another for a year. I learned to go to the road where a bungalow was advertised and look for an empty bungalow with workmen's vans outside then I returned in the evening or weekend and had a good look through the windows to see what they were like. I eventually applied for and got a bungalow that was OK for me. We are allowed to keep cats and dogs although there's a limit, I think it's two. 
    My bungalow wouldn't be suitable for everyone due to the size, the bathroom is so small the door can't be fully opened as the toilet is behind it and there's no room for a bath just a shower, the kitchen is tiny too like a corridor, one of the doors can't be fully opened because of the kitchen unit behind it. 
    I think I probably got a bungalow as there isn't a great demand for them where I live whereas there is a big demand for family houses which is where I lived previously owned by the same housing association.
  • Ross_ScopeRoss_Scope Community Team Posts: 2,480 Disability Gamechanger
    Thanks for sharing your experience @blues, I'm glad you were able to get a place.

    You mentioned that you are allowed to keep cats and dogs, so do you? I'm curious :) 
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  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 0 Listener
    Lobbying local government on disability rights is a complete waste of time IMO, especially when the Tory government was voted in by disability bashing Daily Fail readers.



  • MarkN88MarkN88 Member Posts: 424 Pioneering
    My local council advertise their properties and when I last looked into this option for my mum, they advertise their bungalows I think for the same age range, 55 plus, however it also states that if you have an active PIP award you would also be considered. 
  • bluesblues Member Posts: 6 Listener
    Thanks for sharing your experience @blues, I'm glad you were able to get a place.

    You mentioned that you are allowed to keep cats and dogs, so do you? I'm c

    I moved in with an elderly cat and when she died I got a rescue cat, she's been great company during shielding.
  • MartynhMartynh Member Posts: 15 Courageous
    MarkN88 said:
    My local council advertise their properties and when I last looked into this option for my mum, they advertise their bungalows I think for the same age range, 55 plus, however it also states that if you have an active PIP award you would also be considered. 
    Unfortunately they have said it is a strict 55+ with no leeway.
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