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A home for life or a home for now? Understanding indifference towards accessibility and adaptability features among some older homebuyers

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Dominic Aitken, Professor Rose Gilroy, Emeritus Professor Ken Willis



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Taylor and Francis, 2020.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


It has been argued that new homes should be designed with greater accessibility and adaptability to meet the needs of ageing populations and that future proofed dwellings may have a marketing edge and be desirable among older people. Drawing on focus groups with recent and prospective older homebuyers and applying an analytical framework based on insurance theory, we identify attitudes toward accessibility and adaptability features which contribute explanations for the indifference of some older people to inclusive design. We argue that without engaging with these perspectives, efforts to improve later life through home design may be inefficient in achieving success.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Aitken D, Gilroy R, Willis K

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Aging and Environment

Year: 2020

Volume: 34

Issue: 4

Pages: 417-434

Online publication date: 29/01/2020

Acceptance date: 18/12/2019

Date deposited: 18/12/2019

ISSN (print): 0276-3893

ISSN (electronic): 1540-353X

Publisher: Taylor and Francis


DOI: 10.1080/26892618.2019.1707739


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This work was supported by the Newcastle University Humanities and Social Sciences Faculty Research Fund.