A hopeful series on troubled waters in the senior living industry.

Recently we have published articles that dissected Bloombergs assertion that we are facing a senior living glut and an article about the Sears Methodist bankruptcy filing. Then . . . over the last few weeks I have become aware of a number of other senior living communities that are failing or struggling.  It looks like we are already in the middle of a series on troubled waters in the senior living industry. Lessons But Not Doom and Gloom I am convinced that, overall, the senior living marketplace is very healthy and will continue to be healthy. It will continue to present many great development opportunities.   Yet, at the same time, I am convinced we will continue to see a steady stream, or more accurately a steady trickle, of failures and seriously distressed communities. The problems will not be industry or nationwide but will fall into 3 bins:

  1. A very small number will be the result of too many developers landing in a hot market area at the same time. There will be some short-term winners and losers, but over time these markets will stabilize.
  1. There will be/are developers who are new to the industry and don’t understand the market, seniors, what sells and what doesn’t and ultimately, are too arrogant to learn from those more experienced.
  1. Bad Management and Marketing. If we are honest over the last few years there have been a number of markets with huge pent-up demand. Because of that demand operators didn’t have to be that good to be reasonably successful. Those days are over or almost over.

So ultimately this series should be seen as hopeful.

The Series

Here are some of the areas the series will cover:

  • A deeper dive into the Sears Methodist Bankruptcy with a look at why it happened, what it might mean to residents and what it will take for the owners to extricate themselves or at least the senior communities with the least amount of pain.
  • Why having current market demand does not automatically mean future demand.
  • How taking your eye off the ball or straying away from core competencies can have disastrous results.
  • How, when money gets tight, taking shortcuts can turn into disaster.
  • Sales and marketing does matter.

You readers represent a lot of eyes, ears and brain power I would appreciate your feedback as the series develops. Even better, if you would like to contribute an article to the series that would help the industry. Steve Moran

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