Britain’s Care Crisis – And How The Property Sector Can Solve It

Published on:
Wednesday January 1, 2020

It’s no secret (or surprise) that our government is struggling under the weight of an expanding population. Life expectancy figures are rising globally, alongside increasing birth rates. It’s almost unavoidable, yet that doesn’t alleviate the strain of providing the facilities for older generations. The UK has vastly underprepared for the growing demand of extra care facilities and is asking the private sector to accommodate those in need.

The sector is working rapidly to provide solutions that satisfy local communities and key stakeholders. In this article, we break down Britain’s care crisis and how property companies are working tirelessly to support the elderly in care.

What is Britain’s care crisis?

There are currently around 515,000 specialist retirement and extra care home spaces in England, but this is only enough to accommodate approximately 5% of those over 65. A Which? the report strongly suggested that, based on population trends and the current rates of provision of elderly care places, there will be a shortfall of over 42,000 places by 2022. With just under 150,000 signatures, the petition to encourage the government to discuss the issue has gained considerable attention.

Furthermore, a Channel 5 News investigation from 2017 found that 60% of councils had inflicted closures on care facilities due to budget pressures and austerity. These homes are being closed with as little as nine days’ notice, and that’s creating an uncomfortable level of pressure for them to deliver their service at a high standard.

What is being done to prevent it?

The Homes and Communities Agency, who have the authority to offer to fund to developers, are currently encouraging property firms to build extra care facilities with a 30-40% discount. If a developer registers with the agency, they are entitled to this funding and can begin projects that provide for the elderly community.

According to a government publication provided by the Competition and Markets Authority, there are a number of recommended changes that would need to be adopted in order for the care sector to remain healthy and functional. These include:

  • Enhanced planning at a local level so that local authorities can make accurate and meaningful forecasts of future needs, and how best to meet them;
  • Oversight of local authorities’ commissioning practices to ensure they are supported in drawing up their plans, and that these plans are carried out; and
  • Establishing evidence-based funding principles in order to provide confidence to investors.

In summary, the main theme expressed here is the importance of effective planning stages. With the care industry being designed with the future in mind, it makes sense to have sustainability as a priority during production.

Legend Property Group’s solution

Legend Property Group is registered with the Homes and Communities Agency, and we make it a point to work with architects who know the industry as well as we do.

Between our team and partners, we work solely on projects that benefit all stakeholders, and we build our care homes in communities where there is a need for the support. Local authorities have to be incentivised to treat future care needs, and by promising a steady stream of clientele, developers are more likely to get engagement with community leaders.

If you would like to discuss a development opportunity, please get in touch. You can either call us on 0161 974 0735 or leave a message on our contact form [LINK]. We look forward to working with you.