Pensioners will be encouraged to downsize in order to free up some of the nation’s housing stock, allowing councils to rent out the properties to families.
Housing minister Grant Shapps says councils should offer help to pensioners to move into smaller properties and free up accommodation for families to help address the nation’s housing shortage.
As part of the plans, councils would be responsible for maintaining and renting the properties, at affordable rates, and would transfer any profit from the rent back to the owner.
Shapps told The Telegraph: “For too long the housing needs of the elderly have been neglected. Older people who should be enjoying their homes have watched helplessly as their properties have become prisons and many have been forced to sell their homes and move into residential care.
“With nearly a fifth of our population expected to be over 65 by 2020, radical and urgent change is needed to ensure the nation’s housing needs are met. They can live independently for longer and enjoy more disposable income without selling their home, and other families can benefit from living in an affordable home.”