The COVID-19 emergency has only strengthened the desire seniors have to age in place — an already favorable position among older adults. In fact, over 90% of seniors prefer to remain in their homes as opposed to moving into an assisted living facility, a new survey from American Advisors Group (AAG) found.
“For seniors, the comfort, safety and independence of their home outweigh the desire to move,” Martin Lenoir, chief marketing officer at AAG, said in a press release.
As part of its survey, AAG polled over 1,500 participants between the ages of 60 and 75, gathering data that examined how meaningful “the home” is to U.S. seniors.
Overall, about 70% of seniors have severe needs for long-term services and supports, according to the Global Coalition on Aging. With this in mind, one key takeaway from the AAG survey finding is that there are still business opportunities for home-based care providers looking to increase market share.
Aside from wanting to remain in their home, 82% of respondents have no concrete plans to ever sell their home or move away, according to the survey.
For the majority of seniors, the desire to remain in their homes is related to safety concerns and the need to retain independence. Specifically, 83% of respondents stated they feel safer at home compared to elsewhere, and 40% said their independence is the most important benefit of aging in place.
Family life is another factor that plays a role in respondents wanting to age in place. More than 50% of seniors have an “emotional attachment” to their home because it reminds them of their family.
While aging in place has always been popular among seniors, the public health emergency has solidified this sentiment, with 50% of seniors stating that their desire to stay home is even stronger now.
Over the years, multiple companies that aim to serve this particular senior market have popped up. These companies are especially noteworthy because of their innovative approach to providing aging-in-place services.
One company, CarePods, puts seniors together in 25-member pods. These pods are typically made of seniors that live within 15 miles of each other, and these groups are looked after by a dedicated registered nurse (RN) case manager. This clinician helps members with everything from scheduling trips to the doctor to medication education.
“To age in place, you need to be able to identify resources, you need to be able to navigate the health care environment, and it requires planning and a budget,” Katie Davis, CEO of the company, previously told Home Health Care News. “What our team does is meet with our clients, establish goals … in essence, we identify their vulnerabilities. Our services are designed to work in concert with each other so that we can manage chronic conditions long term in the home.”
UpsideHōM — the brainchild of Papa co-founder Jake Rothstein — creates co-living environments by partnering with existing apartment complexes and leasing individual units.
The company matches seniors with roommates or gives them the option of moving in with a spouse or friend group. Under UpsideHōM’s model, residents have access to services like housekeeping, maintenance support, grocery delivery and meals prepared by chefs.
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