More elderly HDB residents prefer to age in place

11 Feb 2021

Elderly couple eating a meal

The survey also showed that elderly residents were highly satisfied with their HDB units, pointing to the spaciousness of their homes or its convenient location.

A Housing and Development Board (HDB) survey showed that more elderly households prefer to grow older in their current homes.

Conducted in 2018, the latest Sample Household Survey polled nearly 8,000 households across all HDB estates. It is conducted once every five years with the aim of gathering feedback on public housing as well as residents’ changing needs and expectations.

The survey found that the number of elderly residents who plan to continue living in their present flats increased to 86% in 2018 from 80% in 2013.

This comes as they “found it comfortable or had an emotional attachment to it, having developed fond memories of the time spent with their family in the flat”, said HDB.

Recommended article: HDB Assisted Living Flats: What Are They and Who Should Apply

Should they need help with daily life, almost half of the elderly respondents felt that the ideal living arrangement would be for family members or domestic helpers caring for them within their own home.

More than four in 10 elderly respondents were willing to stay at assisted-living facilities if there is a need, so they could access professional nursing and medical care.

The survey also showed that elderly residents were highly satisfied with their HDB units, pointing to the spaciousness of their homes or its convenient location.

In fact. 94.7% of the elderly residents considered their flat as value for money, while 80% were proud of their HDB unit.

“Among the elderly who felt that their flats were value for money, most attributed it mainly to affordable flat prices at the time of purchase, followed by the appreciation in the value of the flat. Some also mentioned that the flat was in a good location and close to various facilities,” said HDB.

On housing aspirations, 77.7% of the elderly were content with their current flat type.

Notably, the proportion of elderly HDB residents, aged 65 and above, grew to 16.5% in 2018 from 9.8% in 2008. Overall, the number of elderly residents crossed half a million persons in 2018.

Suggested read: HDB EASE Programme: How to Apply and How Much Does it Cost?

Meanwhile, the survey also asked respondents on their preferred housing types when they get older.

Around 92.3% of households polled prefer to live in HDB units in their old age.

“Of these, close to half would prefer to live in three-room and smaller flats in their old age, citing ease of maintenance and the need for less space, as their household size decreased in their later years,” said HDB.

Those who preferred five-room and executive flats, on the other hand, wanted more space for family members to live together or to hold gatherings.

Looking ahead, HDB said it will “continue to offer variety in our flat offerings to cater to households with different needs and budgets”.

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