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Informed public policy for improving the housing of an aging population in the United States

Society for the Study of Social Problems

Author: Caputo, R. K.
Type: Journal Article
Year: 1995


As older Americans enter retirement, they are confronted with several major considerations regarding their housing: its appropriateness as regards size & layout; its proximity to family, friends, & necessary services; its cost in terms of rent or mortgage payments, property taxes, & utilities; & its ease of maintenance, safety, & security. In order to properly meet the housing needs of the elderly, who will number about 70 million or 20.2% of the US population by 2030, it is essential that policymakers understand older Americans' opinions about these issues. Here, findings of several recent nationwide surveys of elderly Americans' housing preferences, needs, & concerns are analyzed. It is argued that national housing policy in the US not only needs to focus on the supply & adequacy of housing for the economically disadvantaged elderly, but on their spiraling housing-related costs. While the overwhelming concerns of senior citizens as they grow older are health & financial problems, the importance of the interaction among their housing, health, & income situations cannot be overstated: eg, housing quality & cost can aggravate or minimize older persons' health, &, the lower older persons' incomes, the more likely their health is to restrict their independence.

Further Details

Accession Number: 27.3.03
Keywords: North America, older, policy compliance, housing improvement, health improvement
Reads: 312