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Senior Housing Trends of 2014

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senior housing trendsWithout a doubt, senior housing has come a long way in the past few decades. But there are always improvements to be made.

Current trends indicate that the next few years will see a boom in senior housing as interest peaks in investing in such projects. This interest is expect to spark the construction of a record number of new modernized, efficient, and technologically up-to-date facilities —not to mention all of the current facilities looking to modernize.

This trend itself is reflective of the growing number of seniors (the last of the Boomers turn 50 this year) who are more vocal about the lifestyle and living arrangements they want after retirement—an active, well- connected community with a home-like atmosphere that boasts all the comforts and amenities of their previous life.

What this means for Cincinnati retirement communities remains to be seen, but if current trends present themselves in the same way on a local scale as they are nationally, the face of senior housing will be changing dramatically, leaving local seniors with much more to look forward to in the future.

There are a few common areas where retirement communities across the US will be focusing their attention in the next few years.

Customization— Making What’s Yours Truly “Yours”

Most retirement communities--and even nursing homes-- already allow residents to personalize their space to some degree, but seniors may soon be able to take that personalization one step further as customization is high on the list of items being improved in communities throughout the nation.

Retirement communities are reimagining senior living from the ground up--starting with their very foundations! Customization will be key in creating floor plans and designs that step away from common designs towards a personally satisfying environment that feels like a “facility,” and more like “home.”

On-Site Care— Prevention, Emergency Services, and Everything in Between

No matter the current health or state of mind of an older adult who makes the transition to senior housing, at some point, residents are likely to need some form of assisted care-- whether that means something as simple as a shuttle service or as complex as a regular medical attention. But finding transportation, keeping appointments, and getting high quality medical care could get a lot easier as they may move a bit closer to home.

As alterations are made to how communities are designed and built, it will become more common to see medical facilities of some kind built in to the already substantial infrastructure of a retirement community. Accessibility becomes a key concern for older adults, and having on-site medical services will go a long way towards making residents feel safer and more comfortable.

Getting – and Staying – Connected

A few years ago it may have been a novelty for seniors to use computers and the internet, but today it’s simply part of everyday life form many older Americans. As we’ve all grown more connected, sending email, using Facebook and video chat services, and even blogging have become common ways for seniors to interact, communicate, and stay in touch with friends and family.

To address their continuing popularity, and, arguably, their necessity, many communities are creating spaces devoted solely to computer training classes-- or simply giving residents somewhere to use computers and access the internet.

Health and Wellness – Keeping the Mind, Body, and Spirit Strong

It’s no secret that loneliness and depression can lead to declines in not just morale, but physical health, too. It’s with this knowledge in mind that health and wellness centers have already started to become a common feature in many retirement communities-- and in the next few years it will be all but standard practice to include space for a fitness center in the design of new communities.

The Bottom Line

Cincinnati retirement communities could see a lot of changes in the coming year, and beyond, that offer robust improvements and amenities to new and current residents. These are just a few of the big ideas taking shape.

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Bryan Reynolds
April 10, 2014
Bryan Reynolds is the Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations for Episcopal Retirement Services (ERS). Bryan is responsible for developing and implementing ERS' digital marketing strategy, and overseeing the website, social media outlets, audio and video content and online advertising. After originally attending The Ohio State University, he graduated from the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, where he earned a Bachelor of fine arts focused on electronic media. Bryan loves to share his passion for technology by assisting older adults with their computer and mobile devices. He has taught several classes within ERS communities as well as at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute run by the University of Cincinnati. He also participates on the Technology Team at ERS to help provide direction. Bryan and his wife Krista currently reside in Lebanon, Ohio with their 5 children.

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