Nursing homes in England have a history that dates back to the 1800s, but the improvements in the private care sector in the 1980s have led to a dramatic increase in the quality of provision across the sector
Care homes today are nothing at all like those of previous generations
Where once these would have been lonely residential homes where a basic quality of care could not be taken for granted, today these are excellent facilities where medical care is of a very high standard and a wide range of technology is in operation to assist caregivers in providing the best for their clients.
Facial recognition technology, for example, allows caregivers to assess the mood of each client as they go about their day, and intervene with supportive strategies where necessary. Food and beverages and other hospitality services are thoughtfully provided and the surroundings are beautiful – many of the investments we feature are set in the grounds of country houses with stunning gardens and impressive leisure facilities.
UK care homes today are virtually unrecognisable from their historical predecessors.
Driving this remarkable growth is the very real phenomenon of the ageing population. By 2050, it is projected that there will be 1.5 billion people worldwide who are over 60
The world leaders in care homes are in the United States, Australia and New Zealand where the idea of retirement villages have been pioneered. Europe is behind in this regard, for a number of reasons, including land availability.
UK care homes are in-demand
Finding a room in high quality care home often involves being on a waiting list and being patient; rather like finding space at an exclusive holiday or restaurant.
With the ageing population increasing, clients pay for their care through a combination of personal payments and top-up subsidies from local government.
Demand for care homes is not affected by destabilising factors such as the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, the demand for these remains steady because there is a natural desire for living together in caring communities, rather than being isolated from others.
According to Samantha Rowland, Savills’ Head of Senior Living: Thanks to the demographic fundamentals, from an occupier and investor perspective, our survey shows future demand for senior housing to be unaffected by the pandemic – more than any other sector.
“As life expectancy increases and people live healthier lives for longer, the question of where and how the elderly are going to live isn’t going to go away. Housing with care is one option, offering self-contained homes but with a resident community and care at hand when needed.”
Thanks to the demographic fundamentals, from an occupier and investor perspective, our survey shows future demand for senior housing to be unaffected by the pandemic – more than any other sector.
Care Quality Commission
The Care Quality Commission is in charge of regulation and oversight of the care home sector
The CQC ensures that all homes are inspected every three years and provides swift action and response to complaints about quality.
The CQC issues red, amber and green rating to care homes, and takes action against those homes that fall short of the required standards.
Well-run care homes are profitable for both owners and investors
With the average weekly cost in a high-quality home around £660, and ROI in UK carehomes between 35 – 60%, this is a profitable sector with very strong demographic fundamentals.
It is, however, a relatively new concept and quite niche: it is not well-known among the wider community of property investors.
A crucial point to understand: care home investment can only be made with cash. Mortgages are not available for this kind of investment.
Care home investment is thus a good choice for security conscious investors who have liquidity.
Transparent legal process
A share in a care home Unit can be purchased for £25,000
An entire Unit is available for £75,000
Investors will receive a registered title with the UK Land Registry, and their investment is outlined by means of three contracts:
1. The Headline contract: guaranteeing 8%, increasing each year for 22 years
2. Buy-back contract: the Unit can be bought back at an inflated price, every 3 years
3. Inflation contract: the Unit price will be inflated at 3% per annum for the life of the contract
This is the most common contract that our Hong Kong legal team handles, indicating the popularity of this investment class. Any lawyer will be very satisfied with the provisions and transparency of the offer.
A common question that is asked about ethics: is this an ethical area which to invest?
Modern care homes provide excellent quality of care and life to their clients, and are overseen by the UK Government.
To invest in this sector means to participate in a quality-driven service which is appreciated and needed by those in that age range.
While there are plenty of ‘unethical investments’ in the market, investing in a government-regulated, high quality care provider for the elderly is hardly one of them.
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