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Adjustments to the Housing Adaptation Grant Schemes for Older People and People with a Disability

Published on Friday, 10 Jan 2014

Adjustments to the Housing Adaptation Grant Schemes for Older People and People with a Disability

10/01/14

In establishing the Review Group to examine the operation of the Housing Adaptation Grant Schemes for Older People and People with a Disability, the priority was to spread the benefits as widely as possible and to ensure fairness and value for money in the operation of the grant schemes. It is worth noting that the average grant payment for extensions and adaptations is less than 30% of the €30,000 grant maximum. Grants for mobility aids and repairs to older people’s houses are 40% and 55% respectively of the maximum available. There has been no change to the maximum grant available for the Housing Adaptation Grant for People with a Disability (€30,000) or the Mobility Aids Grant (€6,000) – the maximum available under the Housing Aid for Older People has been reduced from €10,500 to €8,000.  (In 2013, the average grant paid under this scheme was €3,995).

Principal Changes

For all three Schemes, Housing Adaptation Grant for People with a Disability (HAGs), Housing Aid for Older People (HOPs) and the Mobility Aids Grant (MAGs), the following changes apply:

  • All household members’ income should be included in the assessment. Spouse’s income is already included, but this should be extended to include other adults living in the house i.e. those over 18 (or over 23 if in full-time education) bringing the criteria in line with the assessment of need for social housing.  There should be a disregard for Carers’ Allowance in calculating the household income. 
  • All applicants should be required to include with their grant application, proof that they are compliant with the local property tax.

 

For the Housing Adaptation Grant for People with a Disability the number of income bands has been reduced from 9 to 6 , the amount of earnings over which no grant is payable has been reduced from €65K to €60K

 

For the Housing Aid for Older People the number of income bands has been reduced from 9 to 6 , the amount of earnings over which no grant is payable has been reduced from €65K to €60K.  The maximum grant was reduced by €2,500 from €10,500 to €8,000 and the age limit for eligibility has increased from 60 to 66 years in line with the majority of supports for older people.  This age limit can in certain circumstances be lowered at the discretion of the Local Authority.  This may happen in certain hardship cases or where guidance is provided by medical professionals. 

There are no changes to the Mobility Aids Grant in terms of maximum grant (€6,000) or the means testing for this grant. The maximum grant to cover 100% of the cost of works will be available to those with gross annual household incomes of up to €30,000.

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