Development programme for housing for older people 2013–2017

In 2030, our country will have around 1.5 million citizens over the age of 65. The change in the population’s age structure will be very rapid and it will have a direct impact on housing. The state’s housing policy attempts to ensure that the older people can live in their homes safely, regardless of their capacity to function or wealth.

In order to enable the older people to remain in their homes for as long as possible, they must have a functional and safe apartment and living conditions. However, our building stock is changing very slowly and this is why we should also prepare for the upcoming change well in advance. In their part, good living conditions also delay and even prevent the transfer to service housing and expensive institutional care.

Development programme for housing for older people 2013–2017 was prepared as cross-administrative collaboration. The measures in this programme include, for example, repairing the existing building stock, developing a new kind of housing solutions and sheltered housing, developing housing environments from the perspective of the older people and matters related to services that support housing. This programme affects the activities of both the older people themselves and the housing and construction sector.

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  • To improve the older people's housing conditions so that the older people can live in their own homes for as long as possible, while taking into account their health state
  • To support forethought and preparation of the older people in relation
  • To influence municipalities so that they can take the issues concerning the older people’s housing into account when planning their operations and finances
  • To steer the operations of the housing and construction sector to better take into account the housing needs of the older people
  • To improve the cooperation between the operators and create operational models that support the older people's housing

Measure strategies

  • Forethought and preparation
  • Promotion of accessibility and renovations
  • Housing quality and enabling various housing solutions
  • The entity of housing, services and the living environment

Focus points for 2016–2017

Between 2016 and 2017, the programme concentrates on extensively promoting the housing development needs of the ageing population in housing policy measures, municipal plans and the operations of the housing and construction sector.

The programme implements housing trials, such as solutions that combine housing and care. In addition to this, the communal nature of housing and living environments suitable to the older people will be promoted.

The development programme will produce information on the housing situation of the older population and create tools for municipalities for preparing for and developing the housing of the older people. The measures in the development programme also include the promotion of technology and modification renovations that improve safety and accessibility of apartments.

The development project is being implemented in cooperation with several operators. With regard to the older people's housing, it is particularly important to develop housing from a local perspective and include the older people in the planning and decision-making concerning their housing and living environment.

Coordination group

The Ministry of the Environment has established a coordination group to support the programme’s implementation between 2016 and 2017.

Between 2014 and 2015, a Cooperation group established by the Ministry of the Environment supported the implementation of the Development programme for housing for older people.

Further information

Raija Hynynen, Housing Counsellor, Department of the Built Environment, Neighbourhood and Housing, tel. +3582952 50093, email:

Sari Hosionaho, Head of Programme, Department of the Built Environment, Neighbourhood and Housing, tel. +3582952 50353, email:, Twitter: @SariHosionaho

Published 2014-06-11 at 8:32, updated 2016-05-30 at 9:51