Shared lives

This page talks about living with a family and renting a room from a family.

How does it work?

In a Shared Lives Scheme someone is matched with a host family and lives as part of that family. They share family life and live with, or near to, the host family. The host family gives support and care.

This can be for:

  • Long-term support
  • A short break
  • Daytime support
  • Family support for someone who lives nearby, but not with the host family.

If the council pays for your support, this is organised by an Adult Social Care team, Social Worker or Care Manager.

If you pay for your support, or you have a personal budget, you or someone who supports you might be able to organise it.

Each Shared Lives Scheme will have a person who makes sure that people are matched with a host family that is right for them. You will meet them first and usually have a trial.

What is good about Shared Lives?

There are good things like:

  • You are part of a family
  • You are also part of the community
  • You are supported by people who get to know you well
  • You will be matched with a place that suits your needs
  • Lots of people who have done this say that it worked well for them.

What is not so good about Shared Lives?

There are some things that aren't so good:

  • The tenancy isn't secure - this means that if it doesn't work well, you might have to leave at short notice
  • You might not get along with the host family
  • The host family might have to move
  • The family might have rules that you don’t like
  • Family carers might see what they do as just a job and do not want to get to know you.
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Learning Disability England
Birmingham Research Park
97 Vincent Drive
Birmingham, B15 2SQ, England
Tel. 0300 2010455
Learning Disability England
Registered company: 4233275
Registered Charity No. 1092587