Implications for the Design of Rental Housing for the Elderly that Improves their Quality of Life

  • YEAR
    Kuboshima, Yukiko
    McIntosh, Jacqueline
    Thomas, Dr. Geoff
    2017 Conference Papers
    Architectural Science
    Conference Papers


As the population ages, the demand for suitable rental housing will increase. Suitable housing
means housing that can accommodate those impairments that typically correspond with ageing. This
paper explores the quality of life (QoL) requirements of the elderly with high‐care needs who live in rental
housing. It identifies important design considerations through a qualitative case study of three elderly
people who need assistance and are living in local‐authority rental housing in New Zealand. The themes
of QoL were identified from the literature and related to the larger themes of; 1. Activities and
independence, 2. Sense of control, 3. Privacy, 4. Relationships, 5. Quality of care and 6. Other. The survey
consisted of a detailed documentation of the physical environment, followed by interviews with and fullday
observations of the residents and their caregivers. The study finds that the design of housing that
improves their QoL requires solutions to accommodate the various conflicting needs for their QoL which
include those derived from the diversity in user’s preferences and impairments. In the design of rental
housing, there is greater need for additional or reorganized space to accommodate caregivers and visitors;
maintain residents’ independence, privacy and other aspects important for their QoL.


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