Living independently


You may decide that you would like to continue to live with your family, or you may decide you would like the chance to try to live independently - we have put together some information about some of things you need to consider before making your decision. 

Types of housing

Social housing renting

  • this type of housing has to be applied for and housing is allocated based on need and priority
  • landlords are regulated and governed by set standards
  • generally the tenancy is very secure and rents are set at a level which reflects housing benefits
  • unfortunately, demand greatly exceeds supply

Private renting

  • private landlords are not concerned with allocation or priority of need
  • there is more choice over property and location - this can mean less security of tenancy
  • private rent can be more expensive - housing benefit may not cover all the cost
  • some landlords do not rent to people on housing benefits

Private sector leasing

  • an option that brings together the benefits of social and private housing
  • tenants are protected because the housing associations are regulated
  • there is no allocation process

Shared ownership

  • helps people with limited funds to buy a property
  • uses the support for mortgage ownership and home ownership long-term disability guidelines
  • to be eligible for this option, you must:
    • have a long-term disability
    • have a housing need
    • claim higher rate care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
    • claim Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and are within the employment support group

Family investment

  • outright ownership
  • mortgage
  • inheritance of property
  • a group of families may purchase a property together or may pay towards some of the costs

Who do you want to live with?

You do not want your new home to be a lonely experience, especially if you find it hard to make new friends. So your first step into living away from the family home, could be done as a small group of friends living together.

It can be really good living with a small group of friends, but living with a friend can be very different.  Having the chance to live together for short periods of time can help you and the group decide:

  • if you would like to live together
  • which household jobs you will need to share
  • what house rules you might like to put in place and
  • what support you might need


Whatever type of housing you choose, you will need to pay for it.  This might be by:

  • rent - weekly or monthly
  • a mortgage - which is money you have borrowed from a bank or building society to buy your home and have to repay, usually monthly

The money you need to pay for your housing, is likely to come from a variety of sources including:

  • wages - income from a paid job
  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP)
  • Universal Credit

Read more about managing your money

Looking after your house

Hoovering, dusting, washing your clothes and making your bed - these are just some of the things that you may need to learn how to do. 

Our homes also need to be healthy, so it is good to know how to prevent germs from spreading.


You might want to sign up to a course to learn cooking and baking skills or have a look at some YouTube videos on how to cook.

Popular recipes include:

Food hygiene

It is also important to make sure that the food you cook is safe to eat:


SEND Team contact information

Civic, 1 Saxon Gate East, Milton Keynes MK9 3EJ


SENDIAS contact information

Civic, 1 Saxon Gate East, Milton Keynes MK9 3EJ