Everybody needs a home: a place where they are able to do the things they like to do; somewhere where they feel safe and secure; somewhere to be with friends or to just relax. Your home and living circumstances should enable you to have as much independence as you can, while ensuring you have the right support to make this happen.
Having your own home can help you to be more independent.
Some ways that people feel more independent are:
- Having their own front door
- Choosing who, if anyone, they want to live with
- Choosing where they want to live
- Doing what they like to do
- Choosing who they will see
- Deciding how they want to live and be supported
Independence doesn’t mean that you have to live on your own, but most people want as much independence as possible with their living arrangements.
This could mean:
- Living on their own in a flat or house
- Living in their own flat in a block of flats for people with learning disabilities
- Living on their own with a support person
The Housing Support Alliance has useful easy read guides for young people with SEND on the various housing options. You can choose to receive this information by video, real life case studies or through pictures www.housingandsupport.org.uk/easy-read
There are a number of different housing options available. We will explore each one as well as advise on where you can go for further help and support to secure the housing of your choice.
If you decide to remain living in your current home but feel that it does not meet your needs, it may be possible to make some changes to your home.
Ealing Council offers a range of services aimed at promoting independence whilst living at home.
Services on offer include:
1. Equipment and Adaptations Service - this service aims to make homes more suitable for people with a disability, for example, a raised toilet seat or bathing equipment. Ealing Council has occupational therapists who can assess the need for special equipment and adaptations to your home.
You can speak to an occupational therapist about your needs and check your eligibility to the service by contacting Social Services Contact Centre:
Social Services Contact Centre
Tel: (020) 8825 8000
Enquiries relating to management and coordination of repairs should be made to the Repairs and Adaptations service:
Repairs and Adaptation Service
Tel: (020) 8825 6070
2. Ealing Careline is an alarm network for people of all ages with a chronic sickness or disability (including learning disabilities), and their carers living in the borough. The emergency alarm system helps people to live independently. You can get help in an emergency by pressing a button – either on a pendent worn around your neck or on a telephone unit. Control Centre staff can talk to you wherever you are in your home and offer emergency help and even general assurance when you feel vulnerable. For an application form visit:
Alternatively, please call 020 8575 5873 to talk to one of our operators.
3. Handyperson Service & Grants -arranges minor jobs in the home for disabled, older or otherwise vulnerable people; You will also be assisted with all aspects of the grant process. To qualify for the Handyperson Service the client must either be: disabled; a single parent in receipt of an income-related benefit* living with child(ren) under 16; aged 60 or over (and not in paid employment);. For more information visit Ealing Improvement and Repairs
Repairs and Adaptations service
Tel: (020) 8825 6070
4. Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities (CTPLD) This a joint health and social service multi-disciplinary team. They work to support adults with learning disabilities to maintain their independence in the community including housing and independent living. CTPLD can also make referrals to:
Short Breaks Services (respite and emergency care) for adults aged 18 years or older with learning disabilities.
Outreach: Customers are supported by an Outreach worker to live independently in their own accommodation or access services within the community
Ealing Shared Lives-CHOICE provides a variety of supported living opportunities within the community for adults with mild to moderate learning disabilities
Ealing Shared Lives (ESL): An adult placement scheme providing long-term support, respite and day opportunities
To find out if you are eligible for a service from the community team contact the Social Care Customer Contact Centre on (020) 8825 8000. The CTPLD team can also be contacted directly:
Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities
62 Green Lane
Tel: (020) 8566 2360
Fax:(020) 8566 2204
You may find it helpful to visit CarePlace where you will be able to find providers of care and support services in Ealing and throughout London. You can search for equipment, adaptations, support planning, personal care, household maintenance and personal assistants. For more information, www.careplace.org.uk
You will have to put your name on the housing register to get this type of housing. The earliest you can register is when you are 18 years old. The easiest way to apply to be on the housing register is to apply online using a system called Locata www.locata.org.uk/onlineform If you have a medical condition or disability that affects your housing needs, you will be required to complete a medical questionnaire.
Make sure you tell them about your disability, as it could determine where you are placed on the Housing Register and how your application is prioritised. More information on Locata can be found www.locata.org.uk/ealing
Ealing Housing Choice & Options Team are able to provide more information and advice on housing applications, the process and on other housing related issues:
Ealing Housing Choice & Options
4th Floor South East
14-16 Uxbridge Road
Tel: 020 8825 7274/8800
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org - if your query relates to bidding or difficulties in accessing Locata.
If you think you may lose your home and you live in the borough, contact the housing advice service: Tel: 020 8825 8888/8881
You can rent from a private landlord. This means paying money to a person who owns a property so you can live there. Private renting may offer you greater freedom to find the type of accommodation you require in the area you wish to live.
More information on renting, www.locata.org.uk/Ealing/Content
Ealing Solutions Housing Team can offer private tenant advice:
Ealing Council Housing Soulutions Team
14-16 Uxbridge Road
Ealing W5 2HL
020 8825 8888
If you decide that you would like to buy your Council property, our Right to Buy Team can help you through the legal process of buying your property, help you apply for the Right to Buy Discount Scheme and answer any home ownership related queries.
For advice and more information on home ownership and mortgage advice, please contact our Right to Buy Team on 020 8825 8833 or 020 8825 9506.
If you are a Housing Association tenant and wish to purchase the home you live in you may be able to buy through their Help To Buy scheme (where a person buys a share of a property and rents the rest of the property from a Housing Association). More information on the Help to Buy scheme, www.helptobuy.gov.uk/equity-loan/equity-loans/
My Safe Home offer to help people with disabilities buy their own home through the Help to Buy scheme. See their easy read guide to home ownership: www.mysafehome.info/easyreadguide/how-can-you-afford-to-buy-a-home.php
Need to borrow money to pay towards the cost of your new home: An Independent Financial Advisor will tell you if you can apply for a mortgage and help you work out how much you can afford to spend on a new home. If you can’t apply for a mortgage right now, they will help you plan so you could apply in the future. They also help with pensions, loans and debt. You can find more information, including how to find a financial advisor, from the Money Advice Service at:www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/choosing-a-financial-adviser
There are a range of financial benefits available to help with housing related costs and support services.
Direct Payments - arranging your own care and services
If you’ve been assessed by your local council as needing care and support services, you may want to choose Direct Payments. They allow you to buy in and arrange help yourself instead of receiving it directly from your local council.To find out if you qualify for Direct Payments contact Adult Social Care on 020 8825 8000 (option 3, 3).
Disabled Facilities Grant
If you are renting your home from a private landlord, Local Authority or housing association, you may be entitled to a Disabled Facilities Grant to help with adapting your home; visit www.gov.uk/disabled-facilities-grants/overview or check with Ealing Council’s Repairs & Adaptation Team 020 8825 6070 for more information.
Disability grants is a guide to grants for disabled individuals. This site saves you time and money by searching charities and Trusts providing funding towards high cost disability equipment, housing adaptations…in fact anything above and beyond the normal cost of living. For more information please visit www.disability-grants.org
You may be entitled to a reduction in your Council Tax bill if your home has certain features that are essential to you living there.
VAT relief for disabled people
If you’re disabled or have a long-term illness, you won’t be charged VAT on products designed or adapted for your own personal or domestic use. To get the product VAT free your disability has to qualify. For more information www.gov.uk/financial-help-disabled/vat-relief
Housing and Council Tax Reduction
You can claim Housing Benefit if you are on a low income and paying rent.
For more information www.gov.uk/financial-help-disabled/home-and-housing
Local Housing Allowance (LHA)
Local Housing Allowance (LHA) rates are used to work out how much housing benefit you can get if you are a tenant renting from a private landlord. The LHA rates relate to the area in which you make your claim and are based on rents paid in the area they relate to. These rents are being paid by people with the same number of bedrooms as the property where you live, or the number of rooms you and your household need. LHA is usually paid direct to you rather than to your landlord.
You can check the LHA rates for Ealing by visiting: www.ealing.gov.uk/info/201103/housing_benefit_and_council_tax_support/328/local_housing_allowance
Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI)
If you’re a homeowner getting certain income-related benefits, you might be able to get help towards interest payments on:
- your mortgage
- loans you have taken out for certain repairs and improvements to your home
This help is paid as part of your benefit and is called Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI).
SMI is normally paid direct to your lender. You can’t get help towards the amount you borrowed - only the interest.
To check if you are eligible for SMI, and for information about how to claim it, go to www.gov.uk/support-for-mortgage-interest/eligibility
Home Ownership for People with Long-term Disabilities (HOLD)
HOLD stands for Home Ownership for People with Long-term Disabilities. It is a government scheme designed to help people with a long-term disability buy any home for sale on a Shared Ownership basis (part-rent/part-buy). You can only apply for the HOLD scheme in England and if the homes available in the other Shared Ownership schemes don’t meet your needs, e.g. if you need a ground-floor home but none are available. Visit www.ownyourhome.gov.uk/scheme/hold/ for more information.
Shared Ownership Scheme
Some properties are available to buy through a Shared Ownership scheme. This is where ownership of the property is shared between you and the landlord. You buy a portion of the property (between 25% and 75%), and the rest is owned by the landlord, to whom who you pay rent. You may be able to buy a larger share later on if you wish. This is a good option to consider if you would like to buy a home but can’t afford a full mortgage. Some Housing Associations and charities offer shared ownership schemes. You can find out more information at www.helptobuy.gov.uk/shared-ownership/.
For advice on tenancies contact Shelter’s UK helpline (0808 800 4444).
for more information about tenancies and your rights
Shelter’s website also tells you where you can find advice in your area:
Mencap provide information, advice and guidance for young people, parents and professionals regarding transition and preparing for adulthood. They run a number of projects that support young people in securing and maintaining suitable accommodation. For more information please visit www.ealingmencap.org.uk