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Sometimes home management tasks can mount up and make living at home difficult. Some people even think of moving into a care home when it all gets too much. 

Our Community Directory has information on where you can get help with tasks in your home like:

  • housework and laundry
  • decorating, maintenance and gardening
  • shopping
  • dealing with bills and money matters

As an alternative to a residential or nursing home, you could also consider employing a Personal Assistant.

Our top ten things to think about will help you to plan your future care, even if you don't need support at the moment.

Repeat prescription services

There are many repeat prescription services available.  Further information is available from 

A new free NHS repeat prescription delivery service has been launched by Co-op Health. You can use their online pharmacy to order your NHS repeat prescriptions & get them delivered free of charge to a UK address of your choice, or you can choose to collect from a post office in your local Co-op.  

If you have a repeat prescription from a GP in England, the quickest way to get started with Co-op Health is by registering for an NHS login. NHS login is the most secure way to connect to your NHS record and protects your information. You can get started online here or by downloading their app.

To prove who you are the NHS will ask for:

  • confirmation of your email address
  • an image of your photo I.D (e.g. passport or driving licence)
  • a short facial recognition or video of you to verify your photo I.D

You can also connect by visiting your GP surgery to 'register for online services' - they'll probably send your codes to you in a letter. If you've already used them to register with Patient Acces you can find them in your profile.

Safe and Independent Living (SAIL)

If you are aged over 55 SAIL assessment can direct you to a wide range of help, advice and support services across Dorset.

The SAIL scheme is a partnership of respected agencies in Dorset including local councils, police, fire, NHS and voluntary organisations. SAIL is a trusted signposting initiative. The aim is to provide the help that enables people to remain living in their own homes for as long as they wish. It covers concerns such as advice on warmer homes, fire safety, memory loss and benefit entitlement as well as many other topics. All the advice is free but some of the services may be chargeable.

For further information please contact:

Age UK North, South & West Dorset

The Dorset Accessible Homes Service can help with jobs around the home. You can access this service if you live in Dorset (outside of Bournemouth or Poole) and are disabled, or aged over 50.

Complete a SAIL form online

Care assistants

A care assistant or personal assistant could help if you with organising services, paying bills or general housework such as cooking and cleaning. They can help you make your daily routine easier, from getting up in the morning to going to bed at night. Read our information on Personal care in the home.

Maintaining your garden

Garden Maintenance and Repairs

Many people find gardening to be a fun and relaxing activity, particularly on a sunny day. However, if you feel that you need some extra support to help maintain your garden there are some things you can do.

If you need support with maintaining your garden, contact Age UK North, South & West Dorset Information and Advice Service on 01305 269444 and they will signpost you towards local gardeners and tradespeople or companies that may be able to help.

Safe gardening

Safe Gardening is an online website that provides useful advice and information on gardening which includes –

  • bonfire safety
  • garden chemicals
  • garden equipment – including support for people with support needs
  • gardening for pensioners
  • garden wildlife
  • growing your own fruit and veg
  • power tools
  • personal protection in the garden
  • pets and children in the garden
  • plants and planting
  • water safety – including fountains, hosepipes and sprinklers

The information provided by Safe Gardening has been developed by people who have lots of experience gardening.


Thrive is a national charity that helps people with a disability to start or continue gardening.

They have practical information on –

  • making garden jobs easier
  • advice on taking care when in the garden.
  • useful hints and tips
  • details of the equipment and tools which are particularly helpful

Visit the Thrive website

Alternatively, you can contact them via telephone on 01189 885 688.

Rubbish collection

If you are disabled or physically unable to move your bins and there is no one else who can help, we can collect them from a point on your property, such as your back door. This is called an assisted bin collection.

You can request an assisted bin collection on behalf of someone else if you have their permission.

Apply for an assisted bin collection

Moving home

If you feel unable to continue living in your own home, we have advice on housing options such as downsizing or moving into sheltered accommodation.

Money and bills

Help with managing your money (budgeting) is available. It's important to regularly look at how much you are spending to make sure you are not paying for things you no longer need or use.


Make sure you are getting all the benefits you should be. The benefits system is complex and often changes, which means many people are not claiming the money that they are entitled to.

Turn2Us Benefits calculator

The government can offer financial help for certain people during the winter.

If you are getting certain benefits, you can get a Cold Weather Payment.

You will get a payment of £25 for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.

You could get between £100 and £300 tax-free to help pay your heating bills if you are a certain age. This is known as a Winter Fuel Payment.

The Warm Home Discount Scheme could get you a £140 discount on your electricity bill. Only certain people are eligible.

You might be eligible for financial help with your energy bills or a grant to make your home more energy efficient.

Priority Services Register

You can join the Priority Services Register with your energy supplier if you are disabled, chronically sick, have a long-term medical condition, or a sight or hearing impairment.

Citizens Advice has more information.

Saving money on your bills

  • tips to save energy and lower your bills include:
  • turn off the heating in rooms you are not using
  • switch off the lights if you do not need them on
  • only fill the kettle with as much water as you need
  • line dry your washing instead of using a tumble dryer
  • close your curtains at dusk
  • use the right sized pan on the right size burner, and always use saucepan lids
  • turn your thermostat down by one degree
  • check that your energy supplier is offering the best tariff
  • use low energy light bulbs instead of normal bulbs
  • line your curtains with a thermal liner
  • fit a hot water tank jacket if your water tank does not have one

Help and advice on saving energy

There are other ways you can save energy that cost more at first but could save you money later on. You could replace your boiler with a more efficient one, install proper insulation in your walls and loft or even generate your own energy by installing solar panels or a wind turbine.

The Energy Saving Trust provides free advice and information on ways you can save energy and the grants that may be available.

Healthy Homes Dorset can help you to keep warmer by installing loft and cavity wall insulation. They also offer free and impartial information and advice.

Certain water suppliers can offer you a discount if you are receiving Pension Credit. Check with your supplier to see if they can help.

Future planning

We have information on financial care planning.

Further information

You may also want to look at these pages: