Enabling Older People's Independence

Welcome to the Life When Renting research programme.

This four year research programme is funded through the Ageing Well National Science Challenge. It is about the future of older people in an increasingly diverse New Zealand where there is not only population ageing but what is effectively a housing tenure revolution – NZ’s previously very high rate of owner occupation is falling rapidly and is accompanied by a rising dependence on the (mainly private) rental market. This means that more older people, both now and in future, depend on the rental market.

This emerging issue has not been addressed in NZ research, policy, or services. Overseas research shows older renters, whether in public or private rentals, are more vulnerable to housing stress, dwellings in poor condition, and social isolation. The probability of admission to residential care is higher among renters. It also found that older renters are poorly covered by home care services.

The research asks, what are the future implications for NZ of growing dependence on the rental market.