As the third quarter of 2018 gets halfway, many baby boomers are getting prepared for moving into senior living facilities. As senior living professionals, we are prepared to give professional advice to the retirees. One of the main areas of focus for baby boomers right now is ensuring they have a certain level of comfort when they retire. Therefore, most of them are searching for the best senior apartments where they can find all aspects of quality care.
In this article, we feature the Top Senior Housing Trends in 2018. Two buzzwords that have dominated the senior housing market in 2018 are Integration and Innovation. The top senior apartments have been designed to integrate the market needs while ensuring innovation at its best. Senior living providers are fully aware that there is a need for being on par with the latest trends that focus on integration and personalized comfort.
Focus on Better Apartments Compared to Bigger Apartments
We are getting into an era where bigger apartments are no longer so important for senior citizens. If you have been keenly following the market trends, senior citizens are actually cashing out bigger apartments and buying or renting smaller and better apartments – apartments that are better suited for their current lifestyle. This is because they are focusing on an easy to clean and comfortable living space. If you were to look at it from the affordability point of view, the smaller, improved apartment becomes more practical for senior citizens. Therefore, we expect to see more senior living developers focus on smaller, improved apartments for seniors.
In the recent past, we saw younger Americans move into micro units with improved facilities and upscale features and amenities. This includes built-in features like Engineered Hardwood from the Baltic Oak collection and innovative modern technology. Senior citizens too will be focusing on smaller apartments where they can find better facilities and also tap into modern technology. The baby boomers are no longer interested in bare, sterile big apartments! They want stylish apartments with modern facilities, so size is no longer their main concern. The challenge that senior housing developers and realtors will face will be to ensure personalized features for every retiree. This is particularly true when trying to match modern facilities and amenities while at the same time offering personalized appeal for their target market, the senior citizens.
Secondary Markets for Baby Boomers
Senior citizens are looking for markets where they can enjoy multicultural and multigenerational influences. They want to be closer to services and have that access to social activities and social amenities. In the modern economy, we have seen services being taken closer to citizens. This has led to increased urbanizations and hence secondary markets are emerging.
The emerging markets have proven to be more attractive to new residents, have strong economic growth, debt and equity capital and they continue to attract local public and private investments. A good example is Seattle in Washington and Austin in Texas. Senior citizens want to stay closer to the emerging secondary markets if not be within them. This is where they have raised their families and have lived while they were actively working.
Therefore, we expect to see senior living professionals and the key real estate players in the senior living market to provide apartments complexes for seniors around these areas. These apartments should have access to arts and cultural centers for the seniors, and also have a partnership with community integrated programs. Smart designs suitable for suburban and urban locations should be available to the seniors. Therefore, we expect to see modernized apartments with modern kitchen accessories, deck accessories and other modern designs in these emerging markets.
Provision of Personalized Care
Another major trend in 2018 when it comes to senior housing will be the provision of personalized care. There are two groups that come to mind when it comes to the development of senior housing plans. There are those seniors that are active and completely independent and the ones that require assistance with daily living activities and therefore prefer to stay at assisted living facilities or senior apartments that are fully equipped to handle their needs. While thinking about these senior citizens, we ought to think about personalized care for the individuals and not collectively as a group. As indicated earlier, the days of collective senior support are slowly being phased out. We are getting into personalized care to ensure better care for senior citizens. Because each senior citizen is unique and has various needs, caregivers are focusing on the person as opposed to the demographic. They are providing care based on the individual needs and desires.
For this reason, senior housing developers should focus on apartments that provide an ideal environment for personalized care. We are seeing thoughtfully designed apartments that make great use of all the space within, with enough space for seniors as well as their caregivers. This demonstrates that the market is focusing on ensuring that caregivers are well equipped to offer personalized care. Through the provision of comfortable and well-designed spaces, we will be able to ensure that the needs of all seniors are met. Therefore, while developing senior apartments, senior living developers need to consider provisioning for quality appliances that will be needed by the caregivers. This is because they too are part of the family and should be thought of when designing or building senior living units.
Innovative Technology will Become a Selling Point
We mentioned that integration and innovation are the buzzwords in every senior living developer’s dictionary today. With a special focus on innovation, we can’t avoid technology today. On the contrary, innovative technology will continue to be seen in the senior housing market. In fact, technological features will be highlighted as a major selling point when it comes to attracting potential prospects.
As such, there is a need for the housing professionals to offer modern technology as a feature when designing the apartments. Today’s living requires interconnectivity to remain educated, entertained and informed. This is a crucial feature that needs to be kept in mind, so that seniors are able to remain active and connected to the world and their families.
Those are some of the top senior housing trends that we continue to see in 2018 going forward and will likely be seeing in 2019 as well. Senior citizens will likely seek to align their search for senior apartments with these trends while senior housing developers should pay close attention to them to make sure they provide today’s aging population with the most innovative and personalized solutions to all of their needs.
– Holly Klamer