Top 10 Questions About Senior Living for General Contractors

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With a growing elderly population, general contractors are establishing a niche in the senior living construction industry. It is a lucrative business that is needed to care for senior citizens. These senior facilities provide access to healthcare and wellness facilities, as well as social programs to keep people connected in a larger community and promote a sense of independent living as much as possible.  This guide shows the most important considerations that a general contractor needs to address before breaking ground. By providing access to all the comforts a resident may expect, and more, you earn the right to be highly sought after and therefore, generate a positive reputation via word of mouth. 

What is the Best Location for Senior Living Construction?

Senior living demands greater choices and luxuries to accommodate the lifestyle outside the community. Senior living community amenities include housekeeping, medication management, community engagement, wellness programs, skilled nursing, self-care services, and don’t forget the parties and entertainment.  Senior living facilities require enough space to accommodate all the needs of the members. Conventionally, senior living facilities are built on a large portion of land, usually 5+ acres.   Many modern contractors are moving towards more  contemporary environments for these communities. It is smart for contractors to build updated living facilities that cater to the preferences and demands of today’s seniors. It is a growing trend to take advantage of mixed-use construction for senior living construction projects. 

What is mixed-use construction?

Mixed-use construction is the development of a building that is used to house multiple industries including residential, commercial, industrial, entertainment, etc. An example of a structure built with mixed-use construction is a building with restaurants and office space on the first floor, and then residential apartments on higher floors, with office space sprinkled within.  Seniors like developing a sense of community, and with businesses and restaurants right outside their door step, it is an attractive amenity for a senior living community.  It is important to be intentional when selecting the right location for a new senior living build. Seniors prefer to be near a central hub that gives them access to walk to nearby attractions but still has enough space for all the essentials of senior living. It is important to balance independent living and constant care. As an example, check out this senior living community located in Westerville, Ohio. 

How Do Senior Living General Contractors Address Security in Assisted Living?

General contractors must be cognizant of the need for security for the vulnerable residents of the community. Although most seniors prefer to continue an active lifestyle in a senior living facility, they can still be more susceptible to accidents, injuries, and even attacks. Proper security measures must be implemented into the construction plan to address these needs. Factors like gated access, locks and key codes, as well as security cameras and equipped personnel go a long way to make the residents safe.

What are the Requirements for Medical Facilities in Assisted Living?

One of the most important things to consider when building new senior living facilities is convenience and proximity to the resources that aging communities need the most. Medical care facilities top this list. Many seniors live with chronic conditions that need regular management and checkups. Others require constant medical care, which means around the clock care with skilled nurses on call. Many senior living centers with assisted living provide expert memory care to cater to members. A high-quality senior living community often has onsite medical care where residents can attend their routine appointments and receive treatment, as well as access to emergency care if needed.

How Can Senior Living Construction Incorporate Varying Levels of Care?

Moving to a new place is tough for seniors. Most of them prefer to stay in a place that is familiar, where they can interact with friends and be close to family. However, the aging process sometimes demands that their current living situation is no longer feasible and they require a greater level of assistance. Providing assisted living and skilled nursing that is constructed with varying levels of care in mind is key to attracting residents from basic accommodations like food service to more intimate services like memory care. Seniors can start out in independent living apartments and transition to areas of the complex that have more supervision if they require it.

What Is the Best Way for a Senior Living General Contractor to Plan Access to Surrounding Businesses?

Senior living facilities are built in the heart of a bustling city to provide the residents with easy access to all the things they love to do. This includes indulging in shopping or a day at the beauty salon. A successful senior living construction project will take this into consideration and provide room for several stores and other attractions within the community. These facilities can be run by the senior living development or be privately owned. Inviting outside retailers to open a potentially prosperous new location can help the senior living facility integrate with the existing community and promote independent living within the senior living facility.

Is Technology Beneficial in Senior Living Communities?

As we all can imagine, technology has changed the lives of citizens living in senior living communities. It has enabled them to be connected fluently to the entire world.Not to mention, the exponential growth in medical technology has positively affected the quality of care available for members. On the contrary, introducing  too many new forms of technology can overwhelm members and create a counter effect that manifests dread towards advancements in technology during the member’s stay.  As retirees get older, they tend to have more difficulty performing day-to-day tasks, but most of them still want their independence. This is where technology comes in. Advances in home technology offer easy solutions to commonplace chores such as turning the lights on and off, adjusting the thermostat, and checking to see who is at the door. Seniors can accomplish these tasks with a voice command and do not need to rely on others as often. These amenities are attractive to senior citizens and are easy to adapt in their daily lives.  Another way that technology can improve the lives of seniors is through communication and security. Internet access allows video chats with family and friends and instant alert systems to report danger. Seniors can even choose to take continued education classes to keep their minds sharp and interact with people from all over the world. The many advantages of technology demand that residence buildings and other facilities be equipped to house the technology needed, as well as future updates.

Are the Assisted Living Grounds Accessible?

Contractors already understand the importance of adhering to accessibility guidelines, but what about going further for even more convenience? Many residents of retirement communities may have restrictions that make it difficult to walk without assistance. It is important to design the grounds so that everything is walkable including ramps or elevators to help seniors maneuver through the complex. Develop a plan to address the needs of the people that will be living there. Furthermore, as a senior living general contractor, what further enhancements can you add to your senior living community that will go above and beyond the call of duty? How can you help seniors maneuver and move around easier? 

Keep Your Senior Living Facilities Plan Simple 

It is important to remember that with age, people are easily disoriented and frequently forget where they are. It is imperative to make the layout of your senior living facility as easy to comprehend as possible. A successful senior living development should pay attention to how the buildings and grounds are organized. Is the design easy to understand? Are amenities with a common theme grouped together and thoughtfully placed? Take care to separate noisy facilities like a swimming pool or bar from activities that require quiet and respect, such as religious centers.

Is There Room for Outdoor Amenities in Your Senior Living Community?

If you have allotted space, seniors love enjoying the outdoors in a space they know is safe. If possible, locate land that allows space for outdoor activities like a swimming pool or tennis courts. If you are restricted by available space, challenge yourself to come up with some creative solutions; perhaps a rooftop pool. By thinking outside the box, you may develop a mind-changing asset that drives traffic to your offering in the senior living market. 

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