Age Friendly Housing and Rightsizing

Age Friendly Housing and Rightsizing

Rightsizing means finding a home that’s right for you now and in the future. This might mean moving to a smaller home or somewhere on one level. Under our Housing Delivery Action Plan 2022-2026, the Council, together with Approved Housing Bodies (AHBs) expects delivery of up to 600 high-quality, new age friendly homes to support older people to age in place and live independently for longer in their own communities.

There are new age friendly homes in Sallymills, Templeogue Village, St. Marks and Maplewood / Fernwood, The Weir and Brady’s Field. In addition, design teams are in place for new developments at St Aongus Green, St Ronan’s Crescent, Pearse Brothers Park and Sarsfield Park with these homes due to commence in 2024. Allocations have commenced for the initial homes becoming available with properties advertised through Choice Based Letting and Rightsizing applications are being progressed from both social housing tenants and private homeowners.

To ensure delivery of new age friendly homes and to meet the needs of local communities across the County, the Council are also exploring additional opportunities for age friendly developments in Citywest, Rathcoole, Clondalkin, Walkinstown and Tallaght though directly delivery and in partnership with Approved Housing Bodies.

The Council’s Rightsizing Policy provides for allocation of age friendly homes to people aged 55 or older through the housing list, transfers (existing tenants rightsizing) or the community list (financial contribution for private homeowners rightsizing). It is intended that 50% of homes in new age friendly housing developments will be used for rightsizing, with priority for tenants transferring from local areas, and one in five rightsizing opportunities will be available to private homeowners through the Community List. For inclusion on the community list, the homeowner must agree that the Council will either purchase their existing home at a discount or accept a financial contribution from the net proceeds of the sale of the property depending on the homeowner’s age.


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1. What is rightsizing?

2. Who can rightsize with South Dublin County Council?

3. What are the benefits of rightsizing? 

4. Preparing for rightsizing/what to consider

5. I own my home. What is the Community List (financial contribution to the Council)?

6. I am an SDCC tenant. How do I transfer?

7. How long does the process take?

8.Where will properties be available for rightsizing?

9. What the features of age friendly housing development?

10. What are the tenancy rules for new age friendly homes?

11. How do I find out more information about Rightsizing? 

What is Rightsizing?

Rightsizing generally means choosing to move home later in life into housing that is more suitable. This was previously more commonly referred to as “downsizing”. Rightsizing recognises the diverse needs of older persons, including that few older people currently live in a home that supports both ageing in place and independent living for longer. It also provides for more efficient use of homes by assisting older people to move from larger, under-occupied homes into specifically designed, age friendly homes that can meet their evolving needs now and into the future, offering better quality of life and other benefits (see section 3 below). Rightsizing is also important to help make available larger homes with underused space for households on housing waiting lists.

Who can right size with South Dublin County Council?

You are eligible for rightsizing with South Dublin County Council if you are:

  • Aged 55 or older, and existing tenants and/or sole occupiers of Council rented homes, and wish to apply for a transfer to designated age friendly accommodation through the Transfer List (see section 5 below), or,
  • Aged 55 or older, and private owner(s) and sole occupier(s) of a property that you are selling and wish to apply to the Council for allocation of an age friendly accommodation tenancy through the Community List by either:
    • Selling the property to the Council at an agreed discount, or,
    • Making an agreed financial contribution to the Council from the net proceeds of the sale of the property. (See further details relating to the Community List below at section 6.)

What are the benefits of rightsizing?

The acknowledged benefits of rightsizing include:

  • Moving to purpose-built, energy efficient age friendly accommodation to support long-term independent living and future adaptation where necessary.
  • Socially connected, all developments are close to public transport and activities that are inclusive of the local community as well as residents.
  • Minimising utility/energy costs.
  • Reducing home/garden maintenance requirements and costs.
  • No local property tax payable as tenants of local authority.
  • Assistance from the Council with moving home where necessary.
  • The opportunity to clear years of clutter out of your home and life.

 Preparing for Rightsizing / What to Consider

  • Consider the emotional attachment to your current home. Are you ready to leave?
  • Do you use all the space you currently have? If so, then rightsizing may not be right for you.
  • Do you need to declutter? If so, then try to give away or sell those items you can live without in advance of moving home. If rightsizing feels right to you, then consider which of the Council’s age friendly developments might suit you best.
  • Will you be close enough to your current and future social and support needs (including family, shops, doctor, community centre, church, pub, pharmacy etc.)?
  • If selling a property:
    •  identify a solicitor to act on your behalf
    •  get legal advice on the terms and conditions of the Community List
    •  ensure details on your deeds/folio are correct www.landdirect.ie

I own my home. What is the Community List (financial contribution to the Council)?

Rightsizing is available to private homeowners subject to certain conditions if you wish to:

  • Sell your home at an age-related discount to the Council (see table below), or
  • Sell your home privately and payment and age-related contribution to the Council from the net proceeds of your current property (see table below)

This reflects that a private homeowner is being facilitated to acquire a tenancy in a high-quality, age-friendly home for the rest of your life.


Upon your application for this option being approved, you are included on the Community List.


Details of the required discount/contribution are as follows:

Age Category

Council Discount on Purchase

Financial Contribution to Council for Private Sale

55-64 years

40% discount on the market value

1/2 of net proceeds of sale

65-69 years

1/3 of net proceeds of sale

70-79 years

30% discount on the market value

1/4 of net proceeds of sale

80 years and over

1/5 of net proceeds of sale


A joint application, where the applicants’ ages fall into two different categories, will have the % discount or financial contribution calculated pro-rata accordingly.

Net proceeds shall exclude the discharge of any bona fide mortgage or charge on the property, legal fees incurred and/or other expenses solely related to the sale of the property.

The appropriate financial contribution must be paid, or a legally binding agreement must be in place to pay the contribution, in advance of an applicant moving into their new home.

 I am an SDCC tenant. How do I transfer?

Rightsizing is available to existing Council tenants who apply for a transfer on the basis that there are more bedrooms available to them than they need in their current home. A transfer application can be made by following the guidance on this page.

How long does the process take?

Your rightsizing journey depends on the availability of accommodation in developments that you would like to live in. This means that you may have to wait until developments are built and completed or a vacancy arises in an existing development. Once you are approved for rightsizing and allocated an age friendly home, we will regularly communicate the expected timeframe for your move.

Applicants for the Community List (see section 5 above) should be aware that the sale of their existing property will need to be timed to coincide with the delivery of their new home.

Where will properties be available for rightsizing?

Under the Council’s Housing Delivery Action plan 2022-2026, we aim to deliver up to 600 age friendly homes. These homes will be in various new developments across the County, including in partnership with Approved Housing Bodies. Initial developments available for allocation in 2024 include: Old Bawn and The Weir, Tallaght, St Marks, Clondalkin.

Plans are progressing for further age friendly developments and there are also a number of existing age friendly developments throughout the County in which vacancies may arise. Please keep updated with our website and social media content which will have information about upcoming new developments.

When applying for rightsizing, you should only nominate developments that you wish to be considered for and which will meet your needs and preferences.

What are the features of age friendly housing development?

  • Age-friendly homes are generally one or two-bedroom owned either by the Council or an Approved Housing body (AHB).
  • Each new development comprises high-quality, energy efficient homes that are capable of supporting independent living for longer.
  • These homes are designed with their own front door, while some will have back gardens or shared communal space to be used by all residents.
  • Some developments will have community rooms to facilitate activities and supports on site and with caretaking/management arrangements also in place.
  • Developments are generally provided with some parking & good access to public transport

What are the tenancy rules for new age friendly homes?

  • All homes are provided for social housing tenancies and all permanent residents must be aged 55 or over.
  • Age-friendly homes are not available for purchase under any circumstances and succession of tenancy is not available.
  • Tenants of age-friendly homes will pay a weekly rent in line with the Council’s or Approved Housing Body’s rent scheme.
  • Guests and other visitors are at the discretion of the tenant, subject to good estate management requirements, but residents must be mindful that the developments are specifically age friendly and are intended for older persons.
  • All residents will require vetting and will be engaged with as part of the rightsizing process.
  • Having pets in the homes will be subject to the terms of the Council or AHB tenancy agreement.

How do I find out more information about Rightsizing?

Our Healthy Age Friendly Home (HAFH) co-ordinators, will engage with any person aged 55+ who wish to discuss their rightsizing options.

Further information from Age Friendly Ireland is also available at: https://agefriendlyireland.ie/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/AFI-Rightsizing-Policy-Guide.pdf