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Accessible housing assessment

Who can apply?

You can apply for an accessible housing assessment if you are on the North Ayrshire Housing Register (NAHR) and:

  • you are having difficulty accessing the facilities within your current home, or
  • someone in your household is.

What is an accessible housing assessment?

The assessment focuses on the person’s ability, or inability, to perform essential day to day tasks within their home. It’s not about a person’s health condition. It’s about the way the health condition affects how a person manages at home.

An Occupational Therapist carries out the assessment. They will look at:

  • mobility - how easy it is for you to move around
  • access - getting in and out of rooms and your home, and getting to necessary equipment and facilities in your home
  • stairs
  • transfers - like getting in and out of bed
  • personal care - like washing and dressing
  • domestic tasks
  • lifestyle and social interactions
  • how carers, or family, help to manage these tasks.

They will consider whether the health condition will get worse and how this may affect the person in the future.

The Occupational Therapist may ask medical professionals for information about your health condition. We will tell you if this happens.

Only the aspects that can be improved by moving to a new home will be considered in awarding ‘accessible housing’ points.

Mental health conditions

If you need to move because of a mental health condition, you (or the member of your household) must be on the current caseload of a consultant psychiatrist or CPN.

A member of the mental health team should also confirm that:

  • moving home is likely to significantly help you, and
  • your symptoms are not expected to improve using other treatments alone.

The assessment will consider the support and treatment previously offered and the outcomes. We consider applicants with severe and ‘enduring’ mental health problems on a case by case basis. An ‘enduring’ mental health condition is one which cannot be completely cured, but can be controlled in some cases.

Apply for an Accessible Housing Assessment

Answer all the questions on the form, as fully as possible. Describe your needs, or the needs of the member of your household who has a medical condition or disability.

If a question does not apply, please write ‘Doesn’t apply’ in the box. Don’t leave boxes blank. A blank box means we may need to return the form to you.

More than one person in the household applying?

Fill in a separate form for each member of the household who is having difficulties at home.
If more than one person in the household qualifies for accessible housing points, we will only award points for the person with the highest need.

Help to fill in the form

You can ask a friend, or relative, to help you fill in the form. You can also ask any of the landlords to help you fill in the form. Contact us to arrange an appointment at one of the offices, or we can arrange a home visit if you need one.

If you wish, you can nominate someone to act for you by putting their details in the box at the end of the form.

What happens next?

We may be able to assess your application based on the information that you have given us in the form. We may need to phone you, or your representative, to ask for more information.

If your case is complex, we may need to visit your home. We’ll send you a letter telling you the date and time of the visit. At the visit, we’ll ask you to show us how your home is affecting you.

You won’t be awarded accessible housing points if:

  • the problems you are having are not affected by the type of home you are in, and
  • moving home would not allow you to cope more independently

Equipment or adaptations

If your home can be made suitable for you, you won’t get accessible housing points. The Occupational Therapist may offer you equipment, like a bath seat, or a small adaptation like a banister, to help you overcome difficulties. Accepting, or rejecting, this offer will not affect the number of points you have been given.

In hospital

We can’t carry out an assessment if you are in hospital. Your application will be put on hold. We will send you a letter to tell you this. You, or your representative should contact us when you return home.

However, if you are in a Specialist Unit and unable to be discharged home, please contact the Common Housing Register Team on 01294 310181 to discuss.

What doesn’t qualify for points?

The accessible housing assessment does not consider any of the following:

  • overcrowding *
  • sharing with friends or relatives*
  • under occupying your home (unused bedrooms)*
  • your home needs repairs or upgrading*
  • you are affected by antisocial behaviour
  • you are being harassed by, or having problems with, your neighbours
  • you have difficulty looking after your garden – find out about our grass cutting scheme
  • visitors have difficulty getting into your home
  • you are pregnant, or have young children
  • you, or a member of your household, has an illness you are expected to recover from
  • you, or a member of your household, has a health condition that does not affect your (or their) ability to carry out daily living activities in your current home

*these needs are considered elsewhere in our Housing Policy.

Priority awards

No priority will be awarded if the person’s current home:

  • meets their assessed long term needs, or
  • can be reasonably adapted to meet those needs.

Grade 1 (400 points)

Given when:

  • the person is at significant risk and cannot access any essential facilities now, or in the future

Grade 2 (150 points)

Given when:

  • the person’s quality of life is significantly reduced by their current housing, or
  • the person’s current housing is aggravating a medical condition or disability, and
  • moving to a new home would reduce risk and allow them to live more independently within their home.

Grade 3 (75 points)

Given when:

  • the person’s quality of life is mildly affected by their current housing, or
  • the person’s housing situation may, over time, aggravate a medical condition or disability, or pose future risk that cannot be resolved with reasonable adaptations.

House type choice

Accessible housing points usually restricts the house type choice eg ground floor only. Your housing application will be changed to match the house types recommended by the Occupational Therapist. If you don’t want to be considered for the house types recommended by the assessment, you won’t receive accessible housing points.

Can I apply again after an assessment?

The accessible housing assessment takes account of conditions that will get worse over time, such as respiratory conditions and arthritis, so you don’t usually need to be assessed again.

If, since your assessment:

  • you have not recovered from a condition that you were expected to recover from
  • your health has deteriorated significantly, or
  • you have developed further health conditions, and this has significantly affected your ability to manage your day to day tasks

phone the Occupational Therapist on 01294 310181 to discuss your needs.

Change of circumstances

If your home is adapted to meet your needs, or your health condition improves, you must let us know so that we can reassess your circumstances.

Assessment review

Health needs can change over time. It is important to make sure that the accessible housing points you have reflect your circumstances. If we review your assessment and find that your circumstances have changed, the number of accessible housing points you have could change.

An Accessible housing award qualifies for review every 3 years. We'll write to you to let you know.

To discuss your accessible housing needs, please call the Common Housing Register team on 01294 310181

Appeal a decision

If you don’t agree with our decision you can appeal against it. Appeal, in writing, within 10 working days of receiving your award letter. Address your appeal to the Housing Manager at the office that dealt with your application.