Renting sheltered housing
Sheltered Housing allows older people or people with particular needs to live independently, with the right support, in a comfortable and secure environment. It also gives the opportunity for social contact and companionship, but equally respects an individual’s right to privacy.
Sheltered Housing accommodation is generally a self contained, one bedroom flat in a main scheme or a one bedroom linked property. Two bedroom properties are available at some schemes.
There are Sheltered Housing schemes throughout Aberdeenshire. Some schemes are run by us (council owned) and some by housing associations.
- Sheltered Housing services and facilities
- Sheltered Housing officers
- Community alarm system
- Sheltered Housing rent and service charges
- Sheltered Housing tenant participation
- Apply for Sheltered Housing accommodation
- Sheltered Housing schemes
Social and community activities
Sheltered Housing is a very special environment, offering you the opportunity to have access to social activities. Some of the groups and activities you can enjoy are:
- informal social gatherings eg afternoon cup of tea and catch up
- concerts or external entertainers
- interest or hobby groups eg crafts, exercises and games
The programme of activities is reviewed six monthly to make sure everyone enjoys them and gives you the chance to discuss new ideas.
Various communal facilities are available in Sheltered Housing schemes, like a lounge, guest bedrooms, laundry room and bin rooms. These are for use by everyone living at the scheme.
The tenants’ lounge is an extension of your home. It is for you, your families and friends and your invited guests to use. The lounge is also used for group activities like games, crafts, classes, coffee mornings, concerts and special or informal social events.
Guest accommodation is available at most schemes. Your friends or relatives can visit for limited periods.
Each Sheltered Housing scheme has a communal laundry available for your use. They all have washing machines and tumble dryers.
All Sheltered Housing schemes offer facilities to encourage you to recycle rubbish.
Car parking is available at most Sheltered Housing schemes.
You may be able to keep a pet or pets, but you must get permission from your local Housing office.
You might not be able to use or get permission to buy a mobility scooter or electric wheelchair due to the physical constraints in a Sheltered Housing scheme, eg the size of a lift and width of corridors.
If you have any mobility concerns contact the Sheltered Housing officer at the scheme. They can advise if you can use a mobility scooter or electric wheelchair, or help you get the advice of a health professional.
Our dedicated team of mobile Sheltered Housing officers support you to live as independently as possible. They’ll work with you to do visits or daily calls. They can:
- give you general advice and help
- help you with home security, maintenance and repairs issues
- help you with official correspondence and filling in forms
- encourage and promote social contact
- help arrange social activities
- help you access other services like the doctor, nurse, occupational therapists and planned care
Sheltered Housing officers help you develop a personal housing support plan. This plan helps you maintain your health and well-being. It is done every six months and can be updated if there are changes in your individual needs or personal circumstances.
Sheltered Housing officers also make sure the right confidential records are kept for each tenant at the scheme. These are kept for contact with your family, doctors and hospitals in case of emergency.
Our Sheltered Housing officers are available Monday to Friday from 8:45 am to 5:00 pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.
An out of hours and day time responder service runs outside these hours. This also provides support for any unplanned care needs. The service is run by Aberdeenshire Responders for Care at Home (ARCH).
A community alarm system is installed in all our sheltered housing flats, linked cottages and communal areas. You can use these to call for help in an emergency or for general help.
Each tenant is given a MyAimee pendant which lets you call for help. You should wear or keep it with you at all times. You can wear it around your neck or wrist, or carry it with you.
You can activate the alarm by:
- pressing the button on the pendant
- pulling the cord, or pushing the red button, on the modules in some of the rooms in your home or communal areas
- pressing the button on the intercom
Your call will be answered by the Sheltered Housing officer on duty, or an operator at the Regional Communications Centre (RCC) if the sheltered housing staff are off duty or away from the scheme. The system identifies where you have made the call from and lets you talk to the person answering your call.
Charges for Sheltered Housing are broken down into rent and a number of service charges. You pay the service charges with your rent.
The rent covers the cost of providing and managing your property, including repairs, maintenance and housing improvements.
The service charges cover the costs of the additional services provided, including:
- heating and lighting your home and the communal facilities
- the Sheltered Housing officer’s duties managing the scheme
- lift maintenance
- fire alarms
- provision of furniture and equipment
- cleaning communal areas
The housing support charge covers the housing support services provided by the Sheltered Housing officers. We invoice for housing support separately from your rent and other service charges.
The rent and service charges, excluding the charge for heating and lighting your home, are eligible for Housing Benefit.
TV licences are free if you are over 75. Some Sheltered Housing schemes may not be covered by the concessionary television licence regulations. If this is the case you’ll need to pay the full TV licence fee.
Sheltered Housing tenants have most of the same legal rights and responsibilities as our other council tenants.
Tenant participation is how you can help us improve our housing service. You can get involved at a local level,looking at issues in your own Sheltered Housing scheme or neighbourhood, or you can look at wider issues across Aberdeenshire. Your local Housing Sheltered scheme may have its own tenant group that meets on a regular basis to discuss issues within the scheme.
Sheltered Housing tenants get a copy of the quarterly Tenants Newsletter. The newsletter has news of involvement opportunities, feedback from tenant groups and information on housing issues in Aberdeenshire.
Sheltered Housing tenant forum
This forum gives you a voice about your housing concerns. It is made of representatives from Sheltered Housing schemes across Aberdeenshire. It meets three times a year to discuss issues about sheltered housing. The forum produces a newsletter, reporting on the forum discussions.
You apply for sheltered housing via Apply4Homes.
You'll be sent a housing support assessment form to assess your support needs and a housing needs assessment form, if relevant. Your application will be assessed using our allocation policy and put on the waiting list.
When a vacancy comes up our housing options team select the top three applicants on the waiting list. A Local Area Coordinator contacts each applicant and does a sheltered housing eligibility assessment.
Some housing associations also provide sheltered housing, contact them to find out more about their schemes.