Adaptations for older people

Older people may be able to get a grant to help pay for the cost of adaptations.

This content applies to Scotland

Grants from the council

During 2009-2010, a new scheme of assistance was introduced across Scotland, changing the way councils provide help with repair and improvement work. This removed many of the grants available.  However there remains a grant scheme for adapations for disabled people.

For more information, please see our page on the scheme of assistance.

Grants from social work

Local authorities have a duty to provide certain assistance to disabled people. [1] This includes:

  • practical assistance

  • help with adaptations

  • provision of facilities within the home to aid the occupier's safety, comfort or convenience.

This assistance could be provided by a grant.

Assistance from the social fund

Older people may be able to get assistance from the social fund to help pay for adaptations. Community care grants are available to people in receipt of certain benefits (including Pension Credit) who are leaving residential or institutional accommodation (eg a care home or hospital) and who need assistance to set up home, or to people who need such assistance to avoid them having to enter residential or institutional accommodation. Community care grants are discretionary.

Applicants who are unable to get a community care grant may be able to get a loan from the social fund. Budgeting loans, available for people who have been in receipt of certain benefits for at least 26 weeks, are available to help spread the cost of certain items, including home improvements and maintenance. Crisis loans are available to help meet short-term needs in an emergency. They are available for minor repairs and improvements. Both budgeting loans and crisis loans are discretionary, and will be repaid by deducting a small amount each week from an applicant's benefit payment.

Help from charities

Older people in need of adaptations may be able to get a grant from a charitable or voluntary organisation. Advice Service Capability Scotland and Scotland's National Disability Information Service's Update service can both provide information on these grants.

Care and Repair schemes

Help and advice about getting repairs and improvements carried out is available for owner-occupiers and private tenants from local Home Improvement Agencies. Home Improvement Agencies are not-for-profit organisations that help older, disabled and vulnerable people remain in their own homes by ensuring that they receive the help and assistance they need. This could include practical assistance such as handyperson services (eg plumbing and gardening) and help with painting the exterior of the property, and could also include advice and information about financing adaptations, repairs or renovations.

For details of local schemes, please contact Care and Repair Forum Scotland.

Right to adapt

Tenants may need to obtain their landlord's consent before they carry out adaptations. For more information, please see the section on the right to adapt.

Last updated: 27 July 2020


  • [1]

    s.2 Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970