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General Enquiries
Make a Referral 0808 208 2147 General 0808 208 3643
15 Dec

What is Supported Living?

Reviewed by Angela Dyson, Director of Supported Living Services

Supported living services enable people with a range of needs to live happy and fulfilling lives, independently and safely in their local communities. When a person goes into supported living, they have their own home with their own tenancy agreement. At the same time, they receive support and care which can range from a few hours a week to one-to-one support, 24 hours a day.

Many people with learning disabilities, autism and other needs require some level of support, so that they can maximise their independence and live the life that they choose. A supported living service can help if someone does not want to live in residential care but would find it difficult to cope on their own at home. Supported living helps people to make choices about how they want to live and to keep doing the things that are important to them.

This page will help you to understand what supported living is, how it differs from residential care and who can benefit from this service.

"You have given me a sense of responsibility and a reason to get out of bed in the morning. I am so much more independent and confident now."

Person assisted by Priory Supported Living South Yorkshire

How does Supported Living Work?

Supported living empowers people with a wide range of needs to retain their independence by being supported to live in their own home. People in supported living have their own tenancy and with support, are responsible for their own bills. In some cases they will furnish, or part furnish their home and take responsibility for repairing any damage. Supported living gives people the security of their own home, with their own tenancy agreement with a landlord. 

There are options to live alone or to share with other people. The type of housing offered includes self-contained flats, houses, bungalows and completely bespoke solutions. Some supported living homes will have assistive technology services which help residents to learn the skills they need for daily living.

Who is Supported Living for?

Supported living services help adults with a wide range of needs including:

  • Learning disabilities
  • Autism
  • Mental health needs
  • Behaviours that may challenge
  • Complex needs
  • Acquired brain injuries (ABI)
  • Forensic needs
  • Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS)

The care and support provided will be tailored to the specific needs of each individual.

What is the Difference between Supported Living and Residential Care?

The main way that a supported living setting differs from residential care is that a person will have their own home and tenancy agreement. They will be responsible for the cost of living and paying their bills, with support from staff.

In residential care, both accommodation and personal support are provided. People who live in residential care will have their own individual bedroom, but other facilities are shared between residents and there will be communal areas such as the kitchen and lounge.

While both offer their own benefits, this means that supported living can provide greater autonomy and personal space than someone may experience in residential care.

What Services do Supported Accommodation offer?

Supported living services provide help across a range of areas to enable people to lead more independent and fulfilling lives. This includes support with:

  • Taking medication
  • Personal care, such as getting washed and dressed
  • Going to college
  • Finding a job or voluntary work
  • Help with money, including claiming benefits
  • Following a healthy lifestyle
  • Maintaining links with family and friends, and building new relationships
  • Cooking, cleaning and looking after the home
  • Accessing leisure and social activities
supported living services

Moving into a Supported Living Service

A move into supported living can be the first time someone has left their family home and may feel like a big step. The right provider will carefully plan their transition into their new home, tailoring this to the individual’s specific needs. For some people this means a gradual transition over a number of months to minimise any anxiety and ensure that they are looking forward to the journey ahead. In other cases, a person may be happy to move into their home straight away.

If an individual wishes to live with others, the supported living provider should match them with other people who have shared interests and lifestyles.

Finding the Right Supported Living Service

If your loved one would like to live more independently and you are considering a move to supported living, contact your social worker in the first instance to talk through the options. These should include continuing to living in the same location if they want to. Some supported living homes may be shared by 2 or 3 people or your loved one may be offered their own home.

Priory Adult Care has supported living services across the UK, which help adults with a range of needs to live independently and safely in their local communities. We work in a person-centred way, which means that our support and care is completely bespoke, and perfectly matched to the unique needs, preferences and aspirations of each individual.

To find out more about the way we work and the outcomes you can expect, please take a look at some of our supported living success stories.

If you would like to find out more about the services available at Priory Adult Care, you can make an enquiry online. You can also call us on 0808 208 2147 to speak to someone directly.