Housing options for people with disabilities

We want to help people stay in their own homes, and in their own communities, for as long as possible.  

This page explains the main options available for people with disabilities, their families and carers and is based on our leaflet Housing Options for People with Disabilities (PDF)  For more detailed information you should refer to our ‘Guide to Housing Options in Moray’ or contact us

Types of housing

Types of housing that may be suitable for people with disabilities are listed below.

Amenity or medium dependency housing

This is housing that is suitable for older people, ambulant disabled or those with mobility problems.  It will have level external access and may have some disabled adaptations such as a level access shower, telecare or community alarm.

Barrier free housing

Barrier free housing is suitable for people with mobility problems who need features such as level external access, but it may be a two storey property.

Sheltered housing

This housing is usually suited to older people but may be available to younger people with support needs.  A scheme usually has a number of one or two bedroom properties in a complex or close to each other and may have day care services.  A warden checks on residents and can be called in an emergency.  The warden may also organise social activities in a communal area.  

Very sheltered housing/extra care housing

This is similar to sheltered housing but is more suited to people with higher housing support and community care needs.  It is more likely to have communal facilities and social activities and often a dining room with an optional meals service.  Day care services are often provided.

Wheelchair accessible housing

This is housing that is purpose built or adapted with features that help a wheelchair user live as independently as possible.  Common features are level external access, carports, wider hallways and doorways, accessible bathroom/shower room, accessible kitchen units, light switches and heating controls at accessible heights.

Residential homes

Residents usually have a single room and en-suite toilet and wash basin.  Staff are available 24 hours a day to help with personal care such as dressing and washing if needed and to care for residents during short periods of illness.

Nursing homes

These are similar to residential homes but with a higher level of staffing due to the greater medical needs of the residents.  Qualified nurses will always be available.

Supported accommodation

These are houses or flats where people live together, in single or twin rooms, with support staff that help with cooking, cleaning and general independent living.  A staff member will usually sleep overnight in the house or complex.

Help with assessing your needs

The Occupational Therapy Service can visit your home to assess what sort of difficulties you are facing, and recommend the best housing options for you.  They try to arrange appointments so that those most in need are seen first, so the time you have to wait for an appointment can vary.

Adapting your current home to meet your needs

Disabled adaptations for owner occupiers

Our Home Improvement Service offer an enhanced Scheme of Assistance and can help if you own or privately rent your home but want to adapt it to meet your household’s needs.  Following an assessment and referral by the Occupational Therapy Service, we can help you:

  • get quotes from approved contractors;
  • produce plans if needed;
  • apply for grants or loans which may be available for the works;
  • organise the work from start to finish;
  • approach other agencies who may be able to help; and
  • find details of contractors.

You can arrange for an assessment by the Occupational Therapy Service by phoning them on 01343 563999.  However, if you just want more information about applying for financial support to adapt your home then contact our Home Improvement Service on 0300 123 4566.

Extending your current home

We may be able to award a grant if your Occupational Therapist agrees, through assessment, that extending your current home is the best option for your needs.  However, grant assistance for this type of work is discretionary and part of the assessment process is a test of your financial resources.  If you are not eligible for a grant, we will give you information, advice and practical assistance to help you to carry out the work yourself or find suitable accommodation.  For more information contact us.

Disabled adaptations for our tenants

We have an annual budget to carry out disabled adaptations to our properties.  We prioritise work following an assessment carried out by your Occupational Therapist.  If the adaptations needed are too expensive, not practical or would not meet your needs or the needs of your household in the long term, you might have to consider other options such as moving to a more suitable home.    

Disabled adaptations for housing association tenants

If you are a housing association tenant you should contact the Occupational Therapy Service for advice and an assessment if necessary.  The Occupational Therapist will make a recommendation to your landlord on your behalf to carry out the work.  If funding is available, any necessary disabled adaptations will be carried out by your landlord.  

Disabled adaptations for private tenants

If you rent your home privately, you should contact our Occupational Therapy Service.  The Occupational Therapist will make a recommendation to your landlord on your behalf to carry out the work.  You should then get formal permission from your landlord for the adaptation.  Your landlord cannot unreasonably withhold permission.  We can also give you or your landlord information and advice to help reinstate a property that has previously been adapted.

Moving home to meet your needs

Sometimes moving to a different property is the best way of meeting your need.

Moving into owner occupation

The Scottish Government’s low cost initiative for first-time buyers (LIFT)  gives help to people who would like to buy a home, but cannot afford to pay the full price for a property.  The scheme is also available to disabled people, who do not need to be first-time buyers, but must show that their current home no longer meets their needs.

For more information contact Grampian Housing Association  who run the scheme in Moray.

Housing Options Scotland

Housing Options Scotland  (formerly known as Ownership Options) are a charity offering free help to disabled people having problems with home ownership.  They can bridge funding gaps.  For example by accessing grants and providing access to independent financial advice.

Sheltered housing

Most sheltered properties are rented from a council or Registered Social Landlord (RSL).  Rarely there are opportunities to buy.  You can find organisations that offer sheltered housing on the Scottish Government's website

Moving into social rented accommodation

Anyone aged 16 or over can apply for our housing or to any of the Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) in the area.  

For our housing, your needs are assessed in line with our Allocations Policy, which includes a functional assessment.  For more information contact us.

Some RSLs (such as Hanover Housing Association , Castlehill Housing Association  and Margaret Blackwood Housing Association  have housing for people with particular needs, but most have homes that are barrier free, or amenity, or wheelchair accessible in many areas in Moray.  You can find a list of RSLs with housing in Moray here .

There is a lack of affordable rented homes in Moray, so you may have to wait a long time for a suitable property to become available.  

Contact Us

Housing and Property


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