Marketing a Twenty-Year-Old Senior Living Property?

Marketing a Twenty-Year-Old Senior Living Property?

Twenty-year-old Retirement CommunityIs this you?  Then you are in one of two situations – either your owners have renovated in the last 5 or 10 years or everything in your senior living property is original…

1) A Renovated Twenty-Year-Old Senior Living Community?

If your retirement community owners have renovated – thank your lucky stars!   It is awesome to be able to tell prospective seniors that a great sign of a quality organization is how well the building is kept up.  Tout the age of your building and make it a plus for future senior residents.

Yes, you may have limited community space or smaller apartments than your newer senior living competition, but competition could have insurmountable debt from financing in the last 5 years.  I am finding that older communities have more flexible payment plans for seniors who are considering an entrance fee for a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC).

2) Original Furnishings and Tired Looking Senior Living Community?

Do you need to avoid the PUMPKIN carpet that has multiple stains in the dining room?  Are the couches covered with throws, because of the discoloration?  Is the carpet threadbare in spots?  This is a sales person nightmare.  What can you do?

Well, there are many in our industry who face this daunting sales task everyday!

You have two hopes in my opinion.  First, let’s hope that your quality of care is amazing and secondly that the operations team has done everything in their power to have a clean, fresh smelling building.   The best defense is often a strong offense.  You can say, “You can go down the street to live in a newer building, but no one can come close to us on the quality of our care.  So you have a choice.  You need to decide if the cosmetic appearance of a community is most important to you or if it is more vital to you in how your loved one will be treated and cared for in the coming months and years.”  Wow!  This is a powerful statement to make!

What would you pick if you were comparing two assisted living communities?  Remember to think like the customer!  Boomers want their parents to live in a nice community.  Surface people will only consider appearances.  Educate the boomer children to determine that care is most important and they will look past the frayed furniture.

If your retirement community has lousy care and looks old, just quit… or there has to be some redeeming quality that you can highlight.   Become a senior living expert in your area, know your competition and accentuate your strengths and minimize your weaknesses.

Please share your marketing success or struggle story, if your retirement community is twenty years or older…

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at  If your curiosity is piqued to inquire on Diane’s availability to speak at a senior housing conference (CCRC, independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing or memory care) – please call: 206-853-6655 or email  Diane is currently consulting in Southern California for Freedom Management Company, the proud debt-free owners of Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California.  For more information: Twitter: @market2seniors Web: Blog: