new senior class: Boomers on campus
'University-linked retirement communities'
unite seniors, colleges
"Our studio or one-bedrooms are intentionally
priced pretty modestly," Diffey says, "so they might be
affordable to someone who retires on a teacher's income.
"Typically, people sell their existing homes to pay the entry
fees. Then the monthly fees cover everything except incidental expenses,
including assisted living and nursing if it should become necessary.
That mitigates against running out of resources as a consequence
of long life. A lot of people are interested in this approach rather
than upfront insurance for financing long-term care."
Diffey says Kendal offers flexible contracts that
allow those who already have long-term-care insurance policies to
get a discount on entry or monthly fees.
The aging of the well-heeled, well-educated baby boomers
is attracting other developers to the trend.
Boston's Campus Continuum, established two years ago
by principals with backgrounds in designing collegiate retirement communities, is focusing on
independent-living communities rather than the more traditional
continuing-care model, says Gerard Badler, managing director. Instead
of paying fees, residents buy their units outright.
"Although in the continuing-care model the entry
fee is usually refundable," he says, "you don't benefit
from any appreciation of the real estate when you buy into that
kind of a community. The 55-plus buyers we have in mind would be
buying into condos or co-ops. In that way, they get the benefit
of any capital appreciation."
He estimates that buyers would need to be able to
sell their homes for $200,000 to $300,000 to finance the purchase
of an active adult condo with little or no mortgage.
"It could be more expensive in high-cost areas
such as New England or California," he says.
Campus Continuum markets communities that are in the
pre-construction phase and targets those who are buying for the
long term, rather than for investment purposes.
"That's critical," Badler says, "because
we want to ensure that they continue to attract people interested
not only in real estate, but in lifelong learning."
As part of its development strategy, Campus Continuum
also solicits requests
from alumni who would like to retire to their alma maters.