New Study Calls for Government to Support Home Modifications to Head Off Looming Housing Crisis for Older Americans
Federal government action to incentivize homeowners to modify their houses to make them safe for aging in place will help stave off the nation’s looming housing crisis for older Americans. These are the findings of a study given by HomesRenewed Resource Center’s Research Director Dr. Jesse M. Abraham to the Gerontological Society of America Annual Scientific (virtual) Meeting earlier this month.
“Without question, today’s housing stock was not built for older Americans,” says Abraham. “My analysis tells us that if Americans are encouraged and helped to modify their homes to make them safe and accessible for older people as well as for differently abled people, healthcare costs – particularly from expensive falls – will be reduced.”
In the paper, Abraham points out that, today, there is a great deal of support for telemedicine, home healthcare, “hospital at home” and other services to help older Americans stay in their homes. Yet, insufficient focus is put on the “home” itself. After a review of the literature and cost analyses, the paper reveals that federal incentives to consumers to upgrade their homes through a variety of mechanisms – tax breaks, early use of retirement funds or others – would enable the federal government to save money on reduced healthcare costs. And, it would keep older citizens out of nursing homes that proved so deadly during the covid-19 pandemic and in their own homes where most people would prefer to stay.
HCAOA is working with the group to identify opportunities for shared goals and advocacy on behalf of clients.
Click here to read the full study.