The Future of Senior Housing is Small

The Future of Senior Housing is Small

We have just wrapped up the Third Annual Residential Assisted Living National Convention.

A Message from RALNA President, Brian Pinkowski, Esq.

The over 650 people in attendance were treated to presentations by important thought leaders in the areas of investment, demographics, and senior housing trends.

Harry S. Dent Jr., the author of The Demographic Cliff, presented data indicating that Residential Assisted Living owners need to be ready for the Baby Boomers in the US within 2 years when they will beginning to need assisted living. Dent warned us that this wave of consumers will be demanding and very particular about their care and surroundings.

Dr. Bill Thomas is an author entrepreneur, and physician whose wide-ranging work explores human aging. Best known for his health care systems innovations, he is the founder of a global non-profit focused on improving care for seniors and the creator of “The Green House.” He reminded us that there were once only three flavors of ice cream and now there is “infinity.” His message to us was that we should expect an increase in “niche” demands for senior care.

Supporting this he pointed out that nursing homes have begun shrinking dramatically, from the 1,200-bed units to increasingly smaller, more intimate settings.  The “innovation” is that people will be living within their communities once more – “as they have been for more than 10,000 years before the industrial revolution tried to fix it.”

We should fully expect more demand for Residential Home Care with specialized characteristics. For example, we should expect increasing demand for homes that cater to specific nationalities – Korean or Mexican, for example.

Lastly, we heard from Robert Kiyosaki, author of the #1 finance book of all time, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and international advocate for personal financial education. Robert’s message was, get into the market now.

In fact, each of these authors spoke of several additional matters, but for those of us focused on residential assisted living homes, their messages were forecasts about the future. In fact, their messages have been supported by others. Smaller is more desirable for many people.

There are benefits to our seniors to live in residential communities, instead of hotels and industrial parks. And they receive more personal care and have fewer falls in smaller homes. Smaller residential care homes are increasingly the “rediscovered” answer to senior care.

We have been shown the future and the future is smaller, more individualized senior care communities.

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