As the demand for age-restricted senior housing continues to grow nationwide, it’s certain to influence more than just the new home builders whose bread and butter depends on paying attention to such trends. It’s also likely to influence the character of neighborhoods as a whole
The numbers tell a story that’s been written about for years. As the Massachusetts’s baby boom generation joins their cohort’s arrival into retirement age over the coming decades, they will become part of the wealthiest generation of senior home buyers in history. Senior housing developers are very well aware of that fact, but its full impact has only really begun to be felt recently. One evidence: the National Association of Homebuilders reports that starts of age-restricted homes nearly doubled between 2012 and 2013.
A look at realtor.com today found 207 homes for sale in senior communities with 25 miles of Boston. Nearly half of those are less than 5 years old. 25 % are new construction. They range in price from a low of $119,000 to a high of $3.5 million. Is it clear that senior housing is not limited to a single price range or type.
Part of the reason may be cultural—but it’s also possible that improvements in health and longevity could be involved. Today’s older generation views senior housing through a different lens than did their forebears, which means that new senior housing communities are taking on a look that’s considerably different from retirement neighborhoods of the past.
Today’s typical senior as part of a financially powerful demographic, is changing the look of retirement neighborhoods. But independent thinking has long been a notable characteristic of the boomer generation—so it also follows that not every senior will make that lifestyle choice.