How to Convince Seniors to Sell Their Homes and Move Into Your Senior Living Community Now
One of the biggest challenges facing many senior living communities now is convincing seniors to sell their homes during the economic downturn. Housing prices in many markets are still declining, or remaining stagnant.
For most seniors the issue is not inability to sell because their mortgage exceeds their home’s value, but rather, that they are “unwilling” to sell since their unrealized gains have declined over the past few years. Thus, families and assisted living prospects needs to be convinced that it is in their best interest to sell sooner, rather than later.
The Roche Associates has developed a training program that walks marketing and sales staff through the best techniques, strategies and tactics to convince seniors to move out of their home and into a senior living community. For more information on this program, please contact us at 1-800-596-8183.
And here are a few tips. First, demonstrate to the prospect how selling their home now rather than later is to their financial advantage. They can reinvest their equity in interest-generating investments, for example, to grow their money. At the same time, give them options to expedite their move-in prior to selling their homes.
Two such options to expedite a move-in prior to the sale of one’s home could include:
Line up a realty company with experience in home rentals.
This option would generate income for the prospective residents until their home was on the market to be sold.
Convince the prospect to take out a low-interest equity or bridge loan for a year.
This equity or bridge loan could be used to make some improvements to the home to make it more marketable and cover the possible gap between a prospect’s income and his/her ability to afford to move into your senior living community. This option would also likely help expedite the sale of the home, since it would be vacant, with less furniture, personal items and clutter, and could be shown by a realtor at any time.
In either case, be sure your sales team members walk seniors and their families through the options, and stay involved in helping them to solve any problems or issues that may arise prior to move-in.
One community that utilized option #2 successfully sweetened the deal by offering to pay for interest costs by reducing the monthly fees to cover these interest costs for up to one year for a $20,000 equity loan. Based on a five percent interest rate on a $20,000 home equity loan, this essentially translated into an $85 per month rent reduction for one year.
And Counter-Arguments to Some More Common Concerns from Prospective Residents!
Here are a few more responses to other common questions by seniors to help convince them that NOW is a good time to sell and move into a senior living community to ensure their long-term prosperity and health.
“What if I don’t fit in?”
Most residents of senior living communities find it much easier than expected to make friends. Friends are built in, as neighbors, table-mates at breakfast or lunch, or companions in community activities. It is actually much easier to make friends in a whole community of people your age who are right around the corner than if you are housebound. Also, research studies show that socialization has incredible benefits for health and longevity. Those with more friends live longer, and suffer from less memory loss. A Harvard University research study in fact demonstrated that socialization has as many benefits as physical exercise for seniors. It is that important for your health!
“It’s important to me to maintain my independence.”Contrary to what some seniors may think, most find that they actually have more time and freedom once they make the move to a senior living community. After all, there are no more worries about household chores or property maintenance, and bills are greatly simplified to one monthly rental fee in most communities. This leaves a lot more time, freedom and independence to do what you want to do!
“I do not want to be a bother to my family.”
Many family members would argue that this is precisely the reason to move into a senior living community, since it can be much more challenging for the family to provide needed care at home. Also, there is more cause to worry about fall or mishaps, and about adequate nutrition, when a senior is alone. Moving to a senior living community can actually alleviate many of the family’s worries.
“I’m worried that it will be hard to downsize.”Moving is always a challenge, at any age. Yet there are companies in most regions that specialize in helping seniors downsize and move, that will take care of most to all aspects of a move, including packing, labeling, and lining up a moving company. Partnering with such a company in your region can help the seniors in your area to make a move go more smoothly.
On Thursday, June 16, 2011, senior living professionals from thirteen states, including NY, TX, CT, MA, MN, IA, OR, WA, LA, KS, NE, FL, and NC, gathered in Tampa, Florida to hear senior living marketing expert and Roche Associates Founder and President Joseph L. Roche share proven strategies, insights and techniques for overcoming occupancy challenges. Attendees also benefitted from a 700+ page information-rich manual, full of examples and effective marketing and sales strategies, available only to attendees and well worth the price of admission by itself!
The “Getting the Commitment” Conference, on “How to Effectively Market and Sell Your Senior Living Community Products and Overcome Occupancy Challenges in Today’s Marketplace,” was acknowledged to be a big success. Due to popular demand, The Roche Associates, Inc. will be hosting two more “Getting the Commitment” conferences on October 6th in Chicago and November 3rd in Philadelphia ~ stay tuned for more details!
Here is just some of the feedback from a few attendees:
“Very insightful. Would urge management companies and developers alike to attend such a seminar.”
~ Dawn Brasch, Community Manager, Eastwyck Village
“Excellent information. Mr. Roche was very knowledgeable and engaging. The materials were put together the best of any seminar I have ever attended. Great common sense and concise techniques to marketing and selling.”
~ Susan Daurie, Owner, Royal Sun Park
“As a former marketing and sales teacher, you have defined what I taught for 30 years: differentiate and overcome objections; add empathy, kindness and caring and it equals sales.”
~ Charlene Pralle-Janssen, Marketing Consultant Team Leader, ABMC Corp.
Hope you will join us at one of the upcoming conferences. More details coming soon!
A recent study by the Alzheimer’s Association reports that one in eight baby boomers, or 10 million people, are expected to develop Alzheimer’s disease in their lifetimes. Risk of Alzheimer’s increases significantly beginning at age 65.
How does this impact your senior living community? Clearly, if you already offer services for those with Alzheimer’s, you can expect this part of your business to continue to grow in the future. If you do not yet have a dedicated Alzheimer’s or memory care unit, you may want to consider developing one in the future.
You can help families of Alzheimer’s victims now by helping them to understand the incredible toll this disease takes on caregivers over time, so they can make informed choices. Making the choice to move a family member to an assisted living facility can make life much better both for the person with Alzheimer’s and for the family members handling their care.
Consider the following startling statistics, which your sales staff may want to share with those considering your community:
- About one-third of family caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias suffer from symptoms of depression.
- Over fifty percent (50%) of family caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s and other dementias report strain regarding family relationships.
- Family and other unpaid caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s are more likely than non-caregivers to have high levels of stress hormones, reduced immune function, slow wound healing, and to develop hypertension and coronary heart disease.
- Among Alzheimer’s caregivers who held jobs, two-thirds said they had to go in late, leave early or take time off because of caregiving, 18 percent had to take a leave of absence, 13 percent had reduced their hours and 8 percent had turned down promotions. Eight percent (8%) of caregivers in the study had to quit work entirely because of caregiving.
- As the disease progresses, many caregivers find themselves putting in 40-hour weeks giving care, and find that it feels like a round-the-clock job.
Families can spare themselves the added stress, and help care for their loved ones best, by reserving an assisted living apartment in a community with a unit specializing in Alzheimer’s care. Let your prospects and leads know the immense toll of caregiving, so they can make an informed decision.
THE GOOD NEWS: Senior Demographics Trends
Everyone has had to weather some storms in this industry in the past few years. The good news is that the long-predicted “Age Wave” is happening, and there will continue to be an increasing need for more and more senior housing in the next few decades. In fact, the senior population will more than double by 2030. So now is a good time to be planning ahead with development projects and ideas for the future!
In the interim, look at ways to increase your census and build success through implementing some of the strategies suggested in this newsletter, or contact us if you need help turning around or filling your community. We offer free 45-minute consultations to help assess your situation and to let you know how we might be able to turn the tide for you and raise your occupancy rates to 95%+. Call us at 1-800-596-8183 to schedule your free consult today!
Here are some of those hopeful statistics for the future of the senior living industry:*
The Wall Street Journal reports that senior housing is set to boom in the next 20 years, and with the increasing older demographics, there will likely be a big shift in senior housing ownership.
According to the US Census Bureau:
the oldest baby boomers will turn 65 in 2011,
and the senior population is expected to double between 2000 and 2030 from 35 million to 72 million.
To put the impact of older Americans into perspective:
while the total US headcount is projected to go up by 18% between 2010 and 2030, the older population will rise 78% during that same period.
As a result, one in five Americans will be 65 or older in 2030.
Those 85 or older are also projected to grow from 4.2 million in 2000 to almost 10 million by 2030 and 21 million by 2050.
* from Trends in Senior Housing: http://www.trendsfashion.net/trends-in-senior-housing.html
OUR CLIENTS’ SUCCESS IS OUR SUCCESS!
And here are just some of the success stories we’ve had in the past year, despite the challenging economy:
Attained 96% occupancy at Summit Point in Cleveland, Ohio, as of July 1, 2010;
Tripled occupancy from 19 units occupied to 58 units occupied at The Regent Independent Living Community in Wichita, Kansas while increasing its lead base threefold;
Filled 65 units of 160 units at Keystone Place at Legacy Ridge, a new community in Westminster, Colorado while netting approximately 7 independent living move-ins per month through October of 2010;
Achieved 60 net move-ins at The Tradition-Prestonwood Independent Living Retirement Community in Dallas, Texas during the first four months after it opened in July 2010 (15 net move-ins per month from July through October); and
Continued to maintain approximately 95% occupancy at the 186-unit Keystone Woods in Springfield, Massachusetts and 98% occupancy at the 90-unit Keystone Commons in Ludlow, Massachusetts despite experiencing turnover of over 33% (more than 90 units by year’s end).
If any assisted living, active adult, retirement community or nursing care center you own, operate, manage, market, or underwrite is not achieving desired occupancy rates, or if you are planning or developing a new project or addition, call The Roche Associates at 1-800-596-8183 for a free 45-minute telephone consultation about how we may be able to help you obtain your occupancy goals more quickly.
Please be aware, however, that we will only be able to schedule a limited number of telephone appointments, on a first-come, first-served basis, so please don’t wait too long to call! The future financial prosperity of your assisted living residence, active adult community, retirement community or nursing care center can start with the call that you make to The Roche Associates today. You could be our very next success story. Make 2011 the year that you take action to meet or exceed your occupancy goals!
Call 1-800-596-8183 today or email us at email@example.com to schedule a free 45-minute telephone consultation about your situation and to ensure a “right of first refusal” offer in your market area.
We look forward to the opportunity to help boost your sales leads, sales, revenues and cash flow in 2011 and beyond.