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Application process

We understand that applying for a supported living or retirement community property might feel complicated or confusing, especially if you’re applying for the first time, or if you don’t have anyone to support you with the process.

This page explains more about the process of applying to live in one of our properties, with personal care or support as needed. It also covers how to apply for one of our technology enabled living support packages.

Two members of staff sat in a room of a supported living service

If you have any other queries at all, please see our supported living FAQs, retirement community FAQs or technology FAQs. If you still can’t find the answer you need, or if you’d prefer to speak to someone, please get in touch and one of our friendly customer service team will be happy to help.

Paying for care and support

Many people pay for the care and support they receive in our services using something called a “personal budget”. A personal budget is an amount of money allocated to you by the local authority (usually the local council), to pay for the care and support you need. Usually, a social worker or care manager will assess your needs and decide how much money is needed, to make sure you get the right level of care and support.  

Following an assessment, you will have the choice of by whom, how, when and where your personal budget is spent. You can ask your local authority to pay your chosen support provider, or have the money paid directly to your personal bank account, so that you can then pay your support provider. This is called a Direct Payment. Some customers, particularly in retirement communities, may pay for their care and support themselves, which is sometimes called ‘self-funding’.

How to apply

Some of our services accept direct applications, sometimes called self-referrals, which mean you can contact our local team at the service you’re interested in, and apply directly. Most of our supported living services and retirement communities have an agreement with the local authority, which means that a team in the local authority must make a referral or application on your behalf. 

After we have received your application, one of our friendly team will contact you to discuss the next steps and to arrange for your needs to be assessed.

Use our property search to find out if we have a suitable service near you, and for more details about any eligibility criteria and how to apply. You must meet the conditions for any eligibility criteria before your application can be considered. Your local authority should also be able to advise what housing and support is available for you in your area.

Technology in the home

Our Technology Enabled Living packages include a range of personalised assistive technology which is designed to help you maintain your safety and independence in your own home, and give you added peace of mind. There are no eligibility criteria to meet, and you can apply directly – you don’t need a referral from your local authority.

Our customers include both Sanctuary Supported Living residents and people who live elsewhere, and our products can either be paid for privately (self-funded), or purchased using the personal budget allocated to you by your local authority, if applicable.

If you have any other queries about the application process for our technology packages, and how we can support your independence, see our technology FAQs. You can also call 0330 1233 365 or fill out our simple enquiry form, and a member of our team will be in touch to discuss your requirements.

Modern, contemporary, supported living apartments at Oleander House.


Read about the types of supported living and retirement community accommodation available.

A supported service user and a member of staff sat together and smiling, they are sat on a brown leather sofa, in front of a laptop on top of a coffee table.

Care and support

Find out about who we support, and about the care and support we provide.

Care and support
A modern example of a supported living service building with large windows

Find a service

See more about our services in your local area, including eligibility criteria and how to apply.

Find a service