Government 'must act' over unfair over 50s housing charges

A charity for over 50s has called for an end to older people being unfairly charged by retirement homes.

An over 50s charity has called on the government to bring an end to the unfair charges demanded from older people in retirement homes.

Age Concern and Help the Aged has criticised homes which levy excessive amounts for costs such as insurance commissions and rents for live-in wardens' flats.

Its comments come after the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) took action after a number of retirement homes were found to have been unfairly charging residents looking to sell or rent their properties.

The charity welcomed the OFT ruling, but stated that further action was needed to make the industry more transparent, thereby reducing the stress suffered by older people.

Andrew Harrop, head of public policy for the organisation, said: "The government needs to improve regulation across the industry as a whole and create simpler ways to challenge unfair housing charges."

This comes after the charity last week called for fairer energy prices to be provided for over 50s after conducting research which revealed that older people are facing higher bills for using less energy than in the past.

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