What is a Home Improvement Agency?
Home Improvement Agencies are local organisations dedicated to helping older, disabled and vulnerable people to live a good life for longer, offering reliable information and advice and supporting them to make modifications to their homes as their health and needs change, especially through later years.
HIA sector in numbers
- Nearly 200 HIAs in England
- 82% coverage of local authorities
- £100 million spent on services including housing repairs, improvements and DFG enabled home adaptations to support more people to live in their homes independently and for longer
- Over 200,000 enquiries from vulnerable and older people, or their families, being dealt with by the sector every year
HIAs offer holistic services to their clients, improving a person’s wellbeing as well as offering practical solutions around the home. The range of services includes:
- Advice and information – impartial advice and information, and support older people achieve the outcome best suited to their needs, whether they need help adapting their own home or finding a new one
- Disabled adaptations (DFGs) – HIAs meet around 50-60% of total DFG demand
- Home repairs/handyperson – apart from helping older people with an ‘odd job’ that they are no longer able to do, the handyperson can also identify further needs and can refer to other services (ranging from benefit checks to referring on to occupational therapists)
- Hospital discharge and re-ablement – many HIAs are working closely with hospital discharge teams to arrange rapid-response adaptations for those patients waiting to return home after a stay in hospital. The schemes facilitate a swift and safe discharge from hospital for older people by ensuring their home environment is safe and ready for their return (grab rails, ramps, widening a doorway, warm in winter, etc)
HIAs also deliver energy efficiency work, housing options advice, help with accessing grants and loans, and more. Find your local HIA
Foundations is the national body for HIAs – visit the Foundations website