Sheltered housing

The Partnership recognise the value of sheltered housing and provide support mainly to older people, some with disabilities and/or mental health needs, to sustain independent lives in a supported environment. All tenants are assessed for any additional support and provided according to needs.

The Council has 31 sheltered housing complexes across the city and consist of between 20 and 60 self-contained homes which may be flats, bungalows or apartments. Most properties have one bedroom, although two-bedroom properties are available on selected schemes.

Many sheltered housing complexes have a visiting Support Officer, and all currently have an emergency alarm service, although this type of support may not be needed.

Support Officers do not provide personal care for residents, but can help you settle into your new home and into the local community. The types of support provided include:

  • Managing your tenancy

  • Making referrals to other agencies

  • Reading letters and dealing with your bills

  • Liaising with your GP or other health professionals

  • Keeping track of appointments and social activities

  • Applying for benefits

  • Administering emergency first aid

Sheltered housing appeals to those who like living independently but want the reassurance of knowing that assistance is available if there is an emergency, or who want the possibility of socialising in a community of people, with similar needs.

Each property comes with built-in 24-Hour emergency alarm equipment, smoke and heat detectors which can be monitored by both on site staff and ATEC24’s monitoring and response service. In addition, properties are fitted with inactivity monitors that alert us if there has been no movement in your property. Some properties are adapted for people with disabilities, and additional pieces of assistive equipment can be added if you have a specific need.


Some properties have their own gardens. Where the gardens and surrounding area are communal for all tenants to enjoy and use, this will be maintained by the Council gardening teams.

*Additional costs apply for tenants using token operated laundry facilities. The Support Officer responsible for each scheme can provide information on charges and when tokens are available.


There is no charge for housing support provided in Sheltered Housing. There is a weekly service charge for ATEC24 alarm equipment, currently £8.40 per week (2019). This covers the cost of the alarm system and emergency responses. Financial assessment can be arranged by calling 0131 529 6707. Depending on individual income, this charge may be reduced or not applicable.

Apply for sheltered housing

Edinburgh Council allocate all their properties including sheltered housing through a system called ‘Choice-based lettings’ where a list of vacant properties is advertised on the Key to Choice website.

You can place a ‘note of interest’ on properties you are interested in. The council will then allocate the property to the applicant who is considered to be in the greatest need.

To apply for a Council or housing association home in Edinburgh, register with EdIndex by completing the application form on Edinburgh Council or by calling: