young woman surrounded by boxes

You may continue to live with your family when you are an adult until it’s the right time for you to move. Your family can support this and you can still become more independent whilst living with your family.  

You may decide you would like to live independently. There are a number of ways you can do this.

If you are in care or are a care leaver there is support for you as you move into adulthood and support with finding, paying for and managing somewhere to live.

Suitable housing is important to someone with a disability. If it’s in a supportive community, it can give someone a safe and secure environment.

Here are some things to think consider when thinking about Housing:

  • Because of their need for additional considerations young people with a disability and their families should be encouraged to think about where they might live in the future as part of their transition planning from year 9 at school or when they are 14 years old.​
  • It is important to begin to develop the different skills you will need to live independently.
  • Schools and family members should support young people to acquire independent living skills such as travel training, basic cookery skills, personal care and money management. Moving away from home is a huge step and should be thought through carefully. 

Housing tips from the Speak Out Council

Speak Out Council is a voice for people in Cambridgeshire who are autistic or who have a learning disability. At a recent Online Housing Event, they provided helpful tips on their experience of housing and helpful things to consider before moving into your own home.

Support to be independent in your home

Equipment to make life easier

Information on daily living aids and equipment is available on the Safe and Well website.

Our Technology-Enabled Care team offers advice and information on a range of assistive, telecare and telehealth devices and aids that can make life easier for people with disabilities. The team takes referrals from anyone, for anyone, for all ages and all diagnoses.


Housing adaptations

If adaptations are needed to accommodation because of a disability funding may be available through a Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG).  

Applications for DFG are managed on behalf of the district councils by the local area Home Improvement Agencies. Find the Home Improvement Agency in your area. Your Occupational Therapist can tell you more about this.

Social Housing

What is Social Housing

  • Homes that are owned and managed by a Registered Social Landlord (sometimes called a housing association) or a Council.
  • Usually housing benefit covers the rent but not always
  • Long term tenancies
  • Repairs and maintenance of the house is covered in the rent
  • There may be some support to help manage your tenancy
  • There are all different types of homes including flats, and houses

In Cambridgeshire the city and district councils are responsible for Social Housing in their areas. 

They provide free, confidential housing advice.  You can find out more or ask for help at the websites below or by phoning them.

If you don’t know what District or City Council area you live in enter your postcode here to find out.

Applying for Social Housing
  • You need to apply to go on the housing register by completing an online application.  This is called Homelink.
  • You will need to provide information including your National Insurance Number, details of your income, your addresses for the last 5 years, proof of who you are (ID) and evidence on any disability or health needs you might have
  • If you are accepted on to the housing register you will go on to the waiting list
  • Every week any homes that are available are advertised on home link and you can say if you are interested in any of them.  This is called bidding.
  • You can ask your housing team to bid on homes for you.  This is called Autobid.
  • There will lots of people who are interested in each home and it will be offered to people depending on need and how long they have been waiting

Help to Complete the Homelink Application

  • You can ask a family member or someone you trust to help you complete the application
  • The District Council Housing team can help
  • P3 is a local charity offer advice about housing including help with completing applications.  You can phone them on 0808 169 8099.  It’s a free phone call.

There is a high demand for social housing there is often a long waiting time for this kind of accommodation. It is a good idea to apply as soon as possible.

Renting from a Private Landlord

You can choose to rent a home that is owned and looked after by a Private Landlord.

The rents might be higher than social housing.  The tenancy, which says how long you can live there, are offered on a short term basis, but can often be renewed and many  people live in the same home for a number of years.

There are letting agents who can help people find a home to rent.

Most private landlords will ask you for a ‘deposit’ and ‘rent in advance’. You will have to show that you have enough money to pay the rent or have someone who agrees that they will pay the rent if you can’t.  This is called a ‘guarantor’.  For young people this is often a parent but it does not have to be.

Shared Ownership

Shared ownership is when you own part of the home you live in and a landlord owns part of it. This may be an option for someone who has some income, but can’t afford to buy home on their own. This option allows you to buy a share of the property and pay rent to the landlord for the rest.  You can increase your share of the property as your circumstances change.

Supported Housing

Supported Housing is when there is some support where you are living.  This can be accommodation with 24/7 support on site, accommodation with daytime support on site, or accommodation with visiting support.

Some supported housing is designed for people to share.  People will always have thier own bedroom but may have to share other parts of your home such as a kitchen or lounge space.

Access to supported accommodation will depend on the needs of the person and whether they meet the eligibility criteria for the service. There will be an assessment to help determine the amount of support they need.

Supported accommodation may only be for a short time with the aim of helping people to move on to more independent living. 

The amount of rent charged in supported housing will be much higher than the rent in general housing. This is to reflect the additional costs of providing this type of accommodation.

Support from Adult Social Care for young people with complex needs

Young people aged 18 and over with learning or physical disabilities, or with sight or hearing loss, may be supported with their housing and daily living through Adult Social Care. Young people who are supported by Adult Social Care should ask their social worker for information about housing and daily living options. Young people who are not receiving support from Adult Social Care can contact us to request an assessment.

Contact adult services - online form

Adult services telephone: 0345 045 5202

9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday


Homelessness is when you have nowhere to live today or will become homeless in the next 56 days.

If you think that you might be at risk of becoming homeless because you can no longer live in the place you are now, or don’t have a place to stay, then you should contact your local Council as soon as possible for information and advice. They have a duty to help you.

Get help to avoid becoming homeless - Cambridge City Council

Homelessness Advice | East Cambridgeshire District Council (eastcambs.gov.uk)

Homelessness - Fenland District Council

Homelessness - Huntingdonshire.gov.uk

Get housing advice - South Cambs District Council (scambs.gov.uk)

You can also talk to anyone who may be involved in supporting you at school, college, health or social care and they will contact the district council for you.

There is a special process for young people who are 16 or 17 and are at risk of homelessness

Additional Resources

Shelter provides useful advice and guidance and they also have a useful tenancy checker tool to help you work out what kind of tenancy you have so you can understand your legal rights.

The Shelter website also tells you where you can find advice in your area.

This resource is designed for partners from education, health and care sectors who are involved in supporting young people to return to their home areas on leaving residential school or college. Home-and-Away.pdf (ndti.org.uk)

Related Pages

  1. Independent Living
  2. Easy Read choosing where you want to live
  3. Easy Read support to live independently
  4. Housing Adaptations
  5. Travel and transport


  1. The Speak Out Council - Our Housing Experiences presentation

Related Services

  1. Shelter
  2. Shelter Housing Advice Helpline

External Links

  1. Homelink
  2. Safe and Well
  3. Cambridgeshire Technology Enabled Care
  4. Shelter Tenancy Checking Tool


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