Extra funding for home adaptations to be considered

More help for home adaptations that support vulnerable residents to stay living safely and independently in their own homes will be considered at a meeting of the Executive on 23 April.

The new funding will also support those residents to move to an alternative home that may better meet their needs, fix health hazards in the home and help those being discharged from hospital to return to a suitably adapted home more quickly.

Philip O'Dwyer, Director of Community Services, explains: "This new funding policy will enable us to offer more support to those who need it most - the elderly and vulnerable in our borough. We will be able to act more quickly to make much needed housing adaptations, such as hand rails, stairlifts and more, for those recently discharged from hospital or those who wish to remain in their own homes but need some extra help to make it easier for them to stay there."

In 2018/19 the Council awarded £515,000 in grant funding for housing adaptations and this is estimated to increase to £707,000 in 2019/20. We consulted widely with people who use our services, Surrey County Council's Occupational Therapy team and other local partners to develop the new policy and best meet the needs of elderly and vulnerable residents.

The new policy will mean that:

  • home adaptations that help prevent falls (rails, ramps, steps and stairlifts) will not be means-tested

  • a new Prevention Grant will be introduced for minor repairs and adaptations that will help those recently discharged from hospital. This will also include works that can help prevent ill-health and funding for emergencies, for example, emergency heating

  • the maximum grant is being increased to £45,000

  • client contributions below £1,000 will be waived.

The policy reinforces one of the Council's key aims to support older, more vulnerable and less advantaged people in our borough. To find out more about the support available, please see our Adapted housing page.

Published on Friday 12 April.