The retirement living model with integrated care could provide major savings government savings of up “£3,500 per annum, per person” according to industry experts.
People are living increasingly longer lives, and it is all the more important that they are well-lived. Creating places where older people can live with appropriate care but also autonomy has the potential to create a real positive impact, whilst easing the pressure on the social services we all rely on. The sector in the UK, however, is largely still fledgling, compared to countries such as Australia and the USA where the model is more developed.
At the recent Healthcare Property and Development Conference, speakers argued that government policy should be focused on helping to build 30,000 homes per annum. Currently, the UK is only building around 13 per cent of that figure.
It was also proposed that the government form a housing policy specifically to tackle the housing needs associated with an ageing population.
Research suggests that 9/10 people say that retirement communities improve overall quality of their life whilst also providing a solution to the problem of social isolation in older people.
Kevin Shaw, Managing Director of Development at the Audley Group, said: “We have 20 retirement villages throughout the UK, but we have many more in the pipeline and we’ll 23 retirement villages in a few months’ time.”
Initially schemes such as these were primarily for purchase, but there has been an increasing move by developers towards a rental model.
Arthur Jennings, Managing Director at Fortwell Capital, expressed the view that this is a rapidly growing market, he said: “Purchasing bulk rental models is going to be an attractive asset.” Fortwell Capital are a privately-owned debt fund that have “residential schemes in Manchester, Birmingham and land in London.”