News of a national ‘bungalow crisis’ has been widely reported across the UK in recent weeks, with a shortage of the single-storey housing being blamed on developers neglecting the needs of today’s older generation.
Just 1 in every 63 houses built today are bungalows, quite a contrast to the 1 in 6 ratio of the 1980s. With an ageing population in need of choice and independence in later life, this trend comes as quite a surprise to outside observers.
But the decline of the bungalow has been long expected by the team behind Inspired Retirement Villages, as explained by Managing Director Jamie Bunce.
“Bungalows often need the same footprint as a traditional family home, so it’s not surprising that developers are focusing on two and three-storey properties that give customers bigger homes and command better profits off the same area of land. But that’s not the only reason that this kind of home has fallen out of favour.”
“Bungalows are an obvious solution for people with mobility problems, but the design principles and space planning are identical to any traditional property albeit spread across a single floor. What older people want is more intelligently designed homes, with well thought out space for flexible open plan living and considerate design that supports true independence.”
According to Jamie, it’s no coincidence that the struggles of the bungalow have coincided with the rise of retirement living developments like Inspired Villages, whose entire design and care support is shaped around the needs and aspirations of older people.
“All the best bits of a traditional bungalow, combined with the innovative ideas of our award-winning architects and designers enable us to create beautiful, charming communities, centered around accessible facilities and amenities. Our developments enable residents to have space to breathe, stunning surroundings and care on a person centric basis."
Recent studies indicate an increasing need for forward-thinking organisations like Inspired Villages. In the past two years alone almost half a million over-55s have abandoned their search for a retirement property due to a lack of suitable options. Something that Jamie feels strongly about addressing:
“It simply isn’t right that so many older people are feeling let-down or limited in their choice of home in this country. Especially considering the amount they’ve contributed to our society and economy. We’re proud to be leading the way in offering new ideas and different choices to people - even if it does mean saying our ‘goodbyes’ to the traditional bungalow for an equally good modern equivalent!”
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