Exploring Opportunities for Senior Home-Sharing in Bruce County

We collaborated with Bruce County to explore senior home-sharing initiatives, focusing on conducting research and providing recommendations to help integrate these programs and address housing affordability challenges in the region.

Client

Bruce County

Roles

Research Design
Literature Review
Interview
Data Collection and Analysis of Findings
Home-Sharing Model Recommendations

Deliverables

Report with senior home-sharing recommendations and implementation framework.

About the Project

The research suggests that senior-owned housing units could be an effective solution to address the principal housing issues affecting affordability in Bruce County. This approach aims to allocate the limited housing resources among those in corse housing need, considering that seniors own a significant portion of housing units in the County.

Hub Solutions partnered with staff at Bruce County to conduct research to explore options for senior home-sharing programs in Bruce County. We conducted thorough interviews and focus groups, gathering information about the individuals’ current experiences with senior home-sharing, including its benefits and potential challenges. We also did an extensive literature review, a comparison of housing data from neighbouring counties, and a scan of similar programs. Drawing from our findings, we made recommendations for Bruce County’s home-sharing models.

What We Did

We scanned and identified 28 home-sharing programs fro seniors and developed a framework to match our participants to the study. We conducted interviews and focus groups with 35 participants, including key stakeholders such as Bruce County officials, community agency representatives, housing/homelessness service providers, Indigenous community members, academics from local educational institutions, a person with lived-experience in a home-sharing arrangement, and landlords.

Our analysis of interviews and focus group data revealed insights into the benefits and challenges of senior home-sharing, informing our recommendations for a safe and inclusive housing environment for seniors.

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Results

Our research uncovered a strong demand for senior home-sharing programs within Bruce County. These initiatives have the potential to address housing affordability issues, alleviate financial strain and combat social isolation among seniors. We identified three types of rental agreements:

  1. Task Exchange home-sharing model.
  2. Free Accommodation home-sharing (No rent).
  3. Paid Accommodation home-sharing (Full rent).

Out of the three, we recommended that homeowners should be able to choose between the Task Exchange home-sharing and the Full Rent home-sharing models. This approach provides flexibility and choice to safeguard the rights and interests of all parties throughout the process.

Because seniors own one-third of the housing units in Bruce County, our research identified actionable insights and recommendations to harness the potential of senior-owned housing units demands, stagnant income levels, and the decrease in available housing. The urgency of action becomes all the more apparent.

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