Background

Sunderland City Council is working to explore technological solutions to provide better housing for the increasingly ageing population in UK. Sunderland is one of only two authorities who have been selected to partner with Homes for Healthy Ageing, a programme launched by Connected Places Catapult, to build a healthier future for the UK.  The programme draws on world-leading academic and industry research to match solutions from health-tech and care innovators with the insights and then the needs of local authorities and housing associations.

Bays Consulting worked with Sunderland City Council, Connected Places Catapult and Parity Projects on the Homes for Healthy Ageing programme to develop an innovative solution to help elderly people to live at home independently, well and safely, for at least five more years.

Challenges

Bays investigated if technology and data could be used to predict cold and damp in homes.

Solution

Bays first researched the different factors that could affect cold and damp, to ensure our solution would meet the diverse needs of the local ageing population. We then developed an end-to-end tool which combines address level data to deliver robust predictions on the presence of cold or damp in a home. These predictions are then used to generate bespoke ‘prescriptions’ within Parity’s Pathways tool, which are a list of measures to improve the condition of the home. All the results and insights are presented and visualised on Bays’ online dashboard.

Bays’ dashboard shows the results as heat maps, where users can take a deep look into an area or hazard of interest. Additional datasets provided by Sunderland City Council as well as open sources (such as Index of Multiple Deprivation) have also been visualised to give more context to the predictions.

Result & Impact

This combined information allowed Sunderland City Council to better understand their housing stock and the areas requiring immediate attention, and plan for their net zero targets. It also provides detailed prescriptions on measures to improve conditions, which can be filtered by individual homes, areas or type of work required. Councils can focus their budget, resources and time to tackle the most at risk homes.

Our predictions and prescriptions offer a plan for every home, which will now create efficiencies for the organisations responsible for improving housing stock but also have the knock-on effect of saving time and money for the NHS by reducing the care burden.

Our solution helps to accelerate innovation for our homes and the adoption of care solutions in the area. The results can also be used to launch test options to improve energy efficiency on reducing energy bills, assisting decarbonisation and meeting complex funding rules.

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Our tool can also predict other home hazards, such as fire, falls & combustion products. If your existing analytics solution doesn’t have the capacity to make these predictions, then let our tool get you started today.

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