Help to Adapt: an evaluation of the Scottish Government pilot scheme to help older home owners adapt their homes

Between January 2015 and March 2017, initiative called “Help to Adapt”. 

The Help to Adapt pilot was a Scottish Government initiative to assist home owners to use equity in their home to pay for home adaptations from a deferred loan secured against the property value.  At the same time, as an integral part of the scheme, expert help was provided to plan and organise works to meet specific needs and wishes. The aim was to encourage people aged 60 and over to plan ahead.

With input from Horizon, Link Group designed, developed and delivered the pilot scheme for a Scottish Government between January 2015 and March 2017. It was agreed that Help to Adapt did not appear to offer the policy solution sought and was not suitable for a national rollout.

However, there is still a need for initiatives which will encourage and enable older homeowners to be pro-active in carrying out adaptations which enable them to remain living at home independently for longer. Horizon, Link and Scottish Government are keen to capture the learning from the pilot to inform future policy and initiatives relating to enabling use of home equity to facilitate achievement of a more suitable home.

An evaluation project is due to report in August 2018 and will sit alongside Horizon’s other research examining different aspects of the whole housing system and the enablers and barriers to accessible homes for disabled and older people.