Ageing well: Housing options and alternative modes of living for later life – Co-housing

Published: 30/07/2021

This podcast explores co-housing as an alternative housing option in later life, considering how it can reduce loneliness and foster social connectedness, independence and community.

Mary Robson, Research and Development Officer at Research in Practice speaks to Hedi and Hilary from Older Women’s Co-housing (OWCH). They talk about the experience of living as part of a co-housing community at New Ground, a new purpose built block of 25 self-contained flats in North London.

This conversation offers unique insight into their experience of and journey to living in specialist housing, highlighting the untapped potential and opportunities of more innovative and under-utilised models of housing. The podcast accompanies chapter one of the Ageing Well: Evidence Review which provides an overview of the current and emerging issues in relation to housing, modes of living and care for a new and diversifying generation of older adults.

Talking points

This podcast looks at:

  • The journey and development of New Ground co-housing.
  • Creating and building a co-housing community.
  • Day to day life at New Ground co-housing.
  • Reducing loneliness and fostering social connectedness.
  • Keeping safe during COVID-19.
  • Co-housing, independence and self-sufficiency in later life.

Resources mentioned in this podcast

Reflective questions

Here are reflective questions to stimulate conversation and support practice:

  1. What alternative housing options are there in your local area?
  2. What are the main benefits of co-housing?
  3. Do you explore alternative housing options with the older people you work with?
  4. What are the key messages from the podcast and how could these support you to think differently about housing options in later life?

Professional Standards

PQS:KSS - Effective assessment and outcome based support planning | Person-centred practice | Direct work with individuals and families | Developing confident and capable social workers

CQC - Effective

PCF - Knowledge