Using data from a variety of sources, the Centre for Ageing better have produced their most detailed annual report yet, with their analysis showing that as a society, we have been far too slow to adapt to our ageing population, and are now playing catch-up, a situation exacerbated by the pandemic and cost-of-living crisis. This has manifested in huge inequalities and worsening circumstances for millions of older people.
The report shows that both the current generations of retirees, and the generations heading towards retirement, are experiencing significant and growing financial difficulties. The number of older private renters is at an all-time high, meaning more people will need to cover the cost of rent while living on fixed – and often meagre – incomes. The data also demonstrates that more people are living with major illnesses and disabilities as they get older. For many, especially the poorest people, this is exacerbated by living in homes that pose a serious threat to their health and wellbeing.
The report also has key recommendations for action, with those for housing being:
- Develop a national plan to fix cold and dangerous homes that are damaging people’s health.
- Make all new homes accessible so that disabled and older people can live in a home that enables them to live independently and with dignity.
- Local government should provide Good Home Hubs - local one-stop shops on all aspects of home repairs and adaptations, with support on everything from finding trusted tradespeople and identifying what work needs to be done, to how to finance repairs and improve energy efficiency.