Older adults generally want to age in place, in familiar home and neighborhood environments. Accordingly, a broad range of accessible, affordable and creative housing options is a critical component of a livable community.
- To remain accessible, homes may need to be inspected for safety hazards (e.g., poor lighting, inappropriately placed carpets and other floor items) and may need to be physically modified (e.g., zero-step entry, wider doorways, and bathroom aids) to accommodate emerging impairments.
- Communities need to invest in growing their stock of affordable housing. Age-diverse communities and development, rather than age-segregated solutions, are necessary to enhance quality of life for all, from Millennials to older adults to the professionals needed to support older people.
- Co-housing arrangements, including shared housing and accessory dwelling units, can enhance Connecticut’s plentiful single-family housing stock to promote aging in place and increase housing affordability.
Recommendations for communities
____ Educate residents on what sorts of home remodeling or modifications may be necessary to successfully support aging in place.
____ Through regional cooperation, compile a listing of vetted home repair and home modification contractors and programs to help older adults and persons with disabilities adapt their homes to meet their changing needs.
____ Adopt policies that encourage incorporation of accessible housing features into new construction, so that new housing can support its residents throughout the lifespan.
____ Ensure that adequate smaller, energy-efficient, affordable housing—in walkable, transit-served, mixed use neighborhoods—exists in every community for all residents, including older adults and persons with disabilities who want or need to change their housing to accommodate their evolving needs.
____ Collaborate with affordable and low-income housing developers to generate these additional housing options so that residents may remain in their community.
____ Consider tax code or tax payment system changes to accommodate those living on fixed incomes, who may struggle to pay rising rents or property taxes.
____ Modify zoning codes and plans of conservation and development to support co-housing arrangements, including shared housing and accessory dwelling units.
- Connecticut Fair Housing Center’s People, Place and Opportunity: Mapping Communities of Opportunity in Connecticut
- 2015 Connecticut Housing Data Profiles (Partnership for Strong Communities)
- Partnership for Strong Communities’ Housing in CT 2014
- Housing America’s Older Adults: Meeting the Needs of an Aging Population
- Increase the Availability of Affordable Homes Toolkit
- Meet the Housing Needs of Older Adults Toolkits
- Accessory Apartments (Fact sheet)
- Shared Housing (Fact sheet)
- Cohousing Association of the United States: What is Cohousing?
- Fair Housing Accessibility FIRST
- Home Fit Guide
- National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification: Guide to Home Modification
- National Association of Homebuilders Aging-in-Place Specialist Certification