Living Independently In Hertfordshire – A Guide To Options Available

Living Independently In Hertfordshire – A Guide To Options Available

Guide to living independently options in Hertfordshire

Most people want to live independently for as long as they are able to. For older people, this may mean that they need to change their living arrangements, perhaps to a smaller property or to types of housing that are designed to support older people. In Hertfordshire, there are many housing options available for older people who may need some support to live independently, including sheltered housing, extra care housing and retirement villages.

On this page, you will find everything you need to know about the independent living options available for older people in Hertfordshire and who you need to contact to find out more.

In some circumstances, your relative may not even need to move to live independently, as there may be solutions to make their existing home safer. For advice on this, check out our page on Safer Independent Living in Hertfordshire.

Downsizing in Hertfordshire

Downsizing in Hertfordshire

Downsizing is a common move to make for older people, especially if they have a house or garden that is becoming difficult to look after. Another reason some people downsize is due to wanting a home without stairs.

There can also be financial benefits to downsizing, as buying a less expensive home can free up money for daily living expenses, or for later life care. You may be interested in reading Age Space’s Downsizing Tips as part of your discussion with your relatives about them moving to a smaller home.

If your relative is planning to downsize in Hertfordshire, there are some important factors that they should take in to account:

NHS Services

Access to health services is important to consider when an older person moves house. You can use our guide to NHS Health Services in Hertfordshire to find out more about the health services available to your relative in different areas of Hertfordshire.


It is also worth considering how your parent will get around in the new area that they move to, especially if they can no longer drive. There are fantastic Community Transport Schemes throughout Hertfordshire, serving the whole county, which are worth looking at once your relative has moved. They can help with going shopping, getting to appointments and meeting friends. You can also read more about getting to and from medical appointments on our Patient Transport in Hertfordshire page.

Home Care Services in Hertfordshire

There are a range of brilliant providers of home care across Hertfordshire than can you offer an alternative to care homes and sheltered housing if your relative isn’t ready to leave the independence of their own home yet. Home care services can help to support your relative with tasks around the house like tidying up and cooking, as well as helping them to get ready for the day.

You can find options across the county by taking a look through Age Space’s Home Care Directory for Hertfordshire, as well as more specific cities, as listed below:

Sheltered Housing in Hertfordshire

Sheltered Housing in Hertfordshire

Often run by district and borough councils or housing associations, sheltered housing allows your relative to have their own small flat or room in a shared building with communal spaces. With sheltered housing, your relative can still remain largely independent, but have support available whenever they need it.

Sheltered housing is managed by staff who are available to support your relative at certain times during the day. Many sheltered housing providers also have personal alarms installed in case your relative needs to request urgent support. Sheltered housing does not provide the same level of care and support as some other independent living options, such as extra care housing.

You can search for sheltered housing in an area of Hertfordshire suitable for your relative from the Hertfordshire County Council website.

Extra Care Housing in Hertfordshire

Extra care housing is another option worth considering for your elderly relatives. Extra care housing provides you with more support than sheltered housing, but more independence than a residential care home. People live in their own homes, with the privacy of their own front door, but have care available 24-hours a day if required.

To apply for extra care housing for your relative, you should contact their local district or borough council. You can also rent or buy extra care properties from private developers. The levels of support they offer may vary and you will need to discuss this with them to ensure it is suitable for your relative’s situation. Providers may also request that your relative has a Care Needs Assessment carried out.

You can find a directory of the different extra care housing options available to your relative in Hertfordshire through Housing Care website.

Retirement Housing in Hertfordshire

Retirement Housing in Hertfordshire

Retirement housing is another option that can help older people to live independently. It is similar to sheltered housing, but there is less care readily available onsite. For this reason, organisations providing retirement housing often request that prospective tenants undergo a Care Needs Assessment, to ensure that they are able to meet their care needs.

Retirement housing also has a greater focus on communal living. Generally speaking, retirement homes consist of a room or apartment within a larger building, with shared facilities such as dining and social spaces. You can search for retirement housing in Hertfordshire from the Housing Care website’s directory.

Private Retirement Villages in Hertfordshire

Retirement villages offer the privacy of your own home, but fantastic communal facilities and a real sense of community. They tend to be social places to live, with calendars of social events. Hertfordshire has two large retirement villages, that can be found below.

Castle Village, Berkhampsted

Castle Village is a 28-acre retirement village set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Its mansion house includes a library, bar, conservatory and snooker room, and the Berkhamsted Golf Club just a short journey away.

Cedars Village, Chorleywood

Cedars Village is situated opposite Chorleywood Common, just a short distance from the M25 with easy access from London. Residents live in apartments and cottages, some in the main mansion house, others throughout the grounds.

There is also a restaurant, ballroom, library, snooker room, medical centre and more. The social calendar at Cedars Village busy, including art, history, scrabble, film and book clubs.