How we can design and build the right homes for the older people of today — and tomorrow

As the proportion of older people in populations around the world grows, so too does demand for age-appropriate housing. In 2016, a UK study found that while many older people want to downsize, they often find they can’t. This is due for the most part to a shortage of attractive real estate options for this growing demographic. This presents the real estate industry with a huge opportunity to use good, contemporary design to transform its offering for older people. The UK’s Housing Our Ageing Population: Panel for Innovation group has developed 10 key principles for design of housing for old people, which focus on simple concepts such space and flexibility, natural light, balconies and outdoor space, adaptability, technology-readiness, shared facilities, plants and the natural environment, energy efficiency and sustainable design.