I arrived in Phoenix, Arizona, today, to speak at the Residential Assisted Living National Convention (RALNATCON), and I have to tell you that it was hard to take a few minutes this evening to write this blog because there is so much incredible energy already at this event. You might be thinking, “Tom, what does residential assisted living have to do with Good Success? I thought you were more about helping me find my purpose so I could Live on Purpose for a Purpose and Work to Have to Give so I can experience Good Success. Why are you speaking at an event where they’re going to spend the entire weekend talking about the ‘Silver Tsunami’?”
Well, that is why I had to take a few minutes to write this blog post even though right now there are so many industry leaders and truly effective, successful community go-givers out there at the opening reception that it was hard to step back. I find, however, even here that people are asking me, “What are you speaking about, Tom? I didn’t know you invested in RAL assets.” Well, here’s the thing:
One of my guiding principles is charity, and that means that it is my job to love and give to the community around me. RAL is one of the most productive ways many real estate investors find to do that.
Let me explain:
Residential assisted living is designed to provide older residents who may not necessarily want to live alone anymore but still wish to retain their independence and their own sense of place in their community an affordable option for housing. Now, you have probably heard some of the staggering numbers about our aging population (and “aging population” doesn’t mean what it used to, by the way, since today’s seniors are healthier and more active than ever). Did you know that 10,000 Baby Boomers turn 65 every day? Another 4,000 turn 85 every day? Of that total 14,000 official senior citizens, a large number are starting to realize they need some sort of assistance from either family or a facility in order to continue to live independently. However, the average cost of a private room in an assisted living facility is $4,000 a month. That is, to say the least, not in the “affordable” range for most seniors. The result is that there is an incredible lack of affordable housing options for our aging population, and that simply contributes to the strain on community resources, the overall housing affordability crisis hitting many major metro areas, and, all too often, the “loss” of active seniors in the community, since many do not engage outside of senior living facilities if they feel confined or disappointed by a perceived loss of independence.
All of that, put simply, tells me that our communities need better options for our aging population and real estate investors and community go-givers can be part of the solution. Did you know that researchers at Berkeley actually established a link between better health in senior populations and high levels of “social capital,” meaning ties between friends, family, and community? In fact, seniors live longer, are more mobile longer, and are generally in better health when they live in communities where they feel like they are a part of the community outside of a residential facility. Since RAL facilities are structured to create independence and located in places optimized for mobility and social interactions, RAL owners are inherently predisposed to be incredible community go-givers.
And that means, as you’ve probably figured out, that a lot of RAL investors at this conference are dedicated to the pursuit of Good Success.
So now you know why I’m here, and you can probably start to guess what I’m going to talk about tomorrow when I share the stage with RAL founder Gene Guarino, the legendary Robert Kiyosaki, and many, many other experts in the industry. If you haven’t registered for this event yet, you might be able to do so if you click the Good Success Link – although they may have sold out. Watch the blog for more reports from RALNATCON from the Good Success team and me, Tom Olson! As always, Good Success is bringing you information about all the ways you can experience success in business and in life by making sure your investing, your business, and your personal pursuits all line up with your purpose to help you experience truly Good Success.