Moving towards independent living can be scary for young people, especially those leaving care.

We aim to make this process as smooth as possible with support from your social worker and personal advisor.

We'll discuss what housing is most appropriate for you. This is important so we can find accommodation that will best support your move into your own home.

We'll work with you and other agencies to make sure you're well prepared for independent living. These plans will be included in your pathway plan.

Finding a home

We'll make sure you have suitable accommodation between the ages of 18 and 21. There are different types of housing available and we'll help you find the right housing option for you. 

We aim to help you find a home where you feel comfortable, safe and secure. We'll also help you to get all your necessary identity documents.

If you're over 18 your personal adviser will help you with: 

  • working with housing services to come up with suitable housing options for you, including supported accommodation
  • remaining with your foster carers in a staying put arrangement
  • looking into different housing options
  • your tenancy, including how to avoid getting behind in your rent payments, paying for bills and budgeting
  • practical support with moving into and furnishing and equipping your new home
  • the cost of your first TV licence
  • getting contents insurance to protect your possessions
  • exemptions or discounts on Council Tax
  • claiming housing benefit or universal credit
  • a housing crisis, including helping if you're threatened with losing your tenancy, or if you have lost it.

See some of the different housing options below. 

Housing options

Staying put

If you’re living with a foster family, it might be possible to agree on an arrangement where you can stay with them after you turn 18.

More about staying put

Shared Lives

The Shared Lives Scheme can help young people with a disability who want to continue living in the care of a friendly and mature carer. You'll also need to meet the adult services criteria for Shared Lives.

More about Shared Lives

Supported lodgings

There is a supported lodgings scheme in Medway where you can live with a family in their home.

The family will be able to support you with learning to live independently.

More about supported lodgings

Supported accommodation

If you cannot stay in your current home when you turn 18 but you need continued support to prepare for living independently you could live in supported accommodation.

More about supported accommodation

Shared accommodation

You may decide to live in a shared house or flat with other people. This can be a good option if you want to live with people you know and share the costs.

More about shared accommodation

Private accommodation

Private rented properties are advertised through private letting agents. If you want to rent privately you'll be responsible for managing your tenancy and paying the bills. 

More about private accommodation

Social housing

You can register for social housing when you turn 17. This is a long process and you're not guaranteed a home. 

More about social housing

Living with friends or family

You may decide to live with family, friends or a partner. We'll support you in your decision and advise you on the best options for you. 

More about living with friends or family

University accommodation

If you go to university you can get a loan to help pay for your accommodation. 

More about university accommodation