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Housing and Property

Tel: 0300 123 4566
Email: housing@moray.gov.uk

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Sheltered Housing

What is sheltered housing?

Sheltered housing is where each home is fitted with special alarm system to make sure help is available at any time in an emergency.  It also has the services of a warden who contacts you every day.

Our Housing Support Policy aims to assist vulnerable people improve their quality of life by providing a stable environment and to enable them to live as independently as possible in the community.

Where do you have sheltered housing?

We have schemes in the following locations:

  • Buckie (Wallace Avenue)
  • Elgin (Gurness Circle, Larch Court, Mossend Place, Muirfield Court and South College House)
  • Forres (Leys Road)
  • Lossiemouth (Marine Terrace)
  • Portgordon (Crown Street, Crown Terrace and Craiganroan Corner)

Other social landlords may also have schemes in Moray.  For further information see our 'Guide to Housing Options in Moray'.

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How do I apply?

If you are interested in moving into sheltered housing, you should first apply online.  Once you have filled in an online application for housing, you will need to send us a medical assessment form.  

Once we have your information, we will assess whether sheltered housing is the best option for you.  We may also award points depending on your living conditions and the problems you face at your current address.  

When a vacancy comes up in a scheme, we consider all applications on the list for that area.  We usually offer the tenancy to the person with the most points.

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How much does it cost?

The amount you will pay depends on your income.

Rent 

If you have a limited income you may be entitled to Housing Benefit to help with the rent.  Different schemes in Moray have different rents.  The actual amount for a property is given in the offer letter we send you.  Rents vary from around £26 to £45 a week depending on where the scheme is and the facilities available within the scheme.

Service charge

The service charge covers the cost of the warden service, which is not included in the rent charge.  The amount you will pay depends on your income and a financial assessment can be carried out for you, if you wish, before or during your tenancy.  Should you not wish to have an assessment, or your income is assessed as exceeding the maximum allowed, you will need to pay the full cost.  The weekly cost is currently £29.75 (at June 2013).  

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What is an alarm system?

We have fitted various systems in every unit of sheltered housing to protect tenants.

  • Community alarm systems - We fit these in every unit of sheltered housing to make sure that you can get help easily when you need it.  The community alarm system works through the phone lines.  We will give you a neck pendant or wristband to wear.
  • Smoke alarms - The smoke alarm will sound whenever levels of smoke or heat reach a dangerous level.  We service them at least every year to make sure that they will work when you need them.  Smoke alarms are linked to the electricity supply in the house and have a battery as well for backup in case you have a power cut.
  • Carbon-monoxide alarms - We fit carbon-monoxide alarms in the same way.  They can detect dangerous gases that have no smell.  If gases are found, the alarm will make a loud sound.  We service these alarms every year.

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How do I get help?

You just need to press the pendant or wristband button, or the red button on the alarm.  This gives you immediate voice contact with the control centre.  You will hear the system dialling through and will hear a message telling you that you are being connected.  Either the warden on duty or a member of staff at the control centre will talk to you and find out what the problem is.  If you cannot be heard, the warden (or another person you have chosen to keep a spare key to your house) will come to help you.  If you cannot open the door and no-one can get in using a key, we will call the emergency services.  

You can ask for help at any time of the day or night and as often as you need it.

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What do I do if the warden is not there?

It is not possible for the warden to be there all the time, but the alarm system is.  If the warden may not be available, the control centre will respond.  The staff there will get help for you from one of the people you have chosen to keep a spare key or from the emergency services.

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What is the warden is supposed to do?

The warden on duty will contact you every day, if that is what you have requested (you decide how often you would like the warden to call).  The warden will make sure that you are safe, comfortable and are keeping as well as possible.  They will arrange help for you if you need it.  For example, getting a nurse, doctor or home help, or by arranging repairs to the property.

In exceptional circumstances the warden may be able to help you by getting any prescribed medicine urgently, or to make a simple meal.  However, this has to be very limited because there are others who may need help too.  The warden's main task is to make sure that you get the help you need.

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Other information

If your heating stops working

You can call the warden if you have any problems with heating or anything else in your home.

Pets

You can keep a pet in sheltered housing but you must tell the warden about it.  If you have a pet, you must keep it under control.  You must look after your pet properly and make sure it is not a nuisance to your neighbours.

Regulation

Sheltered housing services are regulated by the Care Inspectorate http://www.scswis.com/.

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