Editor: Last year was forecast to be a record year for the senior housing market, with more than £1.5bn expected to be invested. It didn’t happen but what we did see was an increase requirements for homes offering safety within a community setting and the need for solutions that drive the market forward in the longer term.

Old people

Source: Shutterstock/Photographee.eu

We believe that an effective way to rectify the imbalance in supply is the introduction of more mixed tenures across senior housing – more notably rental options. Overall, the number of private senior-living rental properties in the UK is forecast to increase by 160% in the next five years, from almost 5,000 to more than 13,000 by 2024.

Lifestory has rolled out two rental options with no exit fees and assured tenancies across its later-living portfolio: Choice Flex and Choice to Buy.

We have seen a 35% increase in demand for rental properties over the past year and predict that this will rise exponentially over the next five years.

Living in a suitable home as you age is crucially important to a good later life. Our recent Homes for Later Living report showed an average person aged 80 feels as good as someone 10 years younger after moving from mainstream housing to housing designed especially for later living.

To create attractive rental solutions for a demographic used to home ownership, we need to create communities that meet their specific needs. This includes good design, location, connectivity and integration within the existing community.

Mark Dickinson, chief executive, Lifestory Group