There was a time when a few developers like Suraj Condominium in Bangalore took the early initiative to launch homes for senior citizens. It was not taken seriously as the importance was not felt. This demand is now on the increase as aged parents are left alone in many cities.
Even housing finance company major, LIC Housing Finance, has taken the initiative to launch a project that caters to the specific needs of senior citizens. This is assuming importance especially at a time when there is migration of skilled professionals to other countries in search of greener pastures, leaving their aged parents to fend for themselves.
According to market sources, a few developers are planning to launch residential projects exclusively carved for senior citizens. Apartments in the price range of Rs20 lakh and above feature a combination of facilities, and service personnel have to be deployed to take care of them. Moreover, in-house facilities ranging from recreational, sports and other facilities have to be carved within the premises to cater to the varied needs of occupants from diverse areas.
It is not easy to conceive a project that will cater to them as there is a pressing need for alternate lifestyles for seniors due to longevity and the prevailing impressions about the risk of living longer. Loneliness, psychological emptiness, lack of safety and security, lack of logistics for instant health care and the vulnerability of elders to exploitation have created a need for the industry to come together and forge unity.
A number of factors have to be taken into account while developing residential projects for senior citizens, feel property consultants. There cannot be high-rise structures even if elevator facilities are made available. And the project has to be built in peripheral areas where land availability and prices are competitive.
“Today’s construction materials come with anti-skid and anti-glare features, full handicap accessibility and emergency alarm systems in every room to enhance the safety levels for senior citizens.
With internet, telephone and TV, a conducive ambience can be created for senior citizens giving them a lifestyle of dignity and safety,” say property developers who are working on various aspects affecting the implementation of such a project. Further, service apartments will have to form an integral part of such projects for visiting relatives.
When similar projects were launched in cities like Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, Coimbatore, there was overwhelming response and in some cities the demand was such that there was a waiting list for future projects.
The Bangalore project by LIC Housing Finance’s Care home division comprising 98 units was sold out in record time and that too without much of a marketing effort.
Though comparatively a new concept to the garden city, housing for senior citizens is the need of the hour especially at a time when children are compelled to travel both within India and abroad for project assignments.
Source: The Economic Times
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