There are around 46 million people age 65 and over living in the United States today. Estimates are as high as 98 million people over age 65 by the year 2060. Senior citizen construction needs to catch up.
No one is getting any younger. The majority of the present 65+ population consists of the baby boomers and their parents. Over 72 million baby boomers were born between 1946 and 1964. The total baby boomer age group increased to around 79 million due to immigration.
Housing this population has created a variety of real estate development, general contracting, subcontracting and employment opportunities to consider.
Senior Citizen construction – Who’s Catching Up
Large developer/builders like Dell Webb, K. Hovnanian Homes, Brookfield, Lennar, Beezer, and others: http://www.bestguide-retirementcommunities.com/retirementcommunitybuilders.html, have embraced the aging population with the large scale communities which go by names Over 55, +62 and Active Adult Retirement Communities. These developments have a huge concentration of construction dollars available to subcontractors and construction job seekers during their build outs.
Another trend targeting those in their senior years is the Multigenerational home. The concept here is to keep families connected or to reconnect them. Builders can erect new homes for adult children and their children with attached living quarters for their parents. Maybe this construction is detached but on the same lot. Seniors can be close to family while receiving or giving care and assistance. So, smaller general contractors create subcontractor and employment opportunities while providing this type of construction.
Senior Citizen Construction – Aging in Place
Aging in place is rather preferred by many seniors. They love their homes, their yards, their neighbors, their church and their memories. Traditionally, contractors did not build with aging in mind, hence, that problem exists in most homes. Raised foundations, high thresholds, narrow halls and doorways, certain types of hardware, bathtubs and curbed showers are all challenges. The aged struggle with these conditions depending on their health and infirmities.
There is an ever growing need for handicap ramps, elevators, graspable hardware. Also, kitchen and bathroom accessibility renovations await construction. Consequently, this market is great for remodeler specialists and other general contractors while providing sub contract and employment opportunities. Accessibility conversions are not for everyone and must comply with various handicap codes.
Another opportunity exists with the NAHB. The National Association of Home Builders offers a special designation program which prepares those interested in this market. The Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) program teaches the skills necessary to compete and succeed in the niche. The information concerning courses and other requirements to earn the CAPS designation can be found in this link.
In conclusion, this market and its associated opportunities for contractors, subcontractors and wage earners will continue to grow. Nationwide opportunities exist.