The number of 80-year-olds has doubled to 24 million, with many relocating to South West Florida. What is their destination?

Leslie Feldman, a regular reader, expressed curiosity regarding recent developments in Naples at the northeast corner of Orange Blossom Drive and Airport-Pulling Road.

Feldman said, “Something big is going up,” to In the Know. “What is it?”

For a key region of Southwest Florida, all of this actually makes sense, and we’ll explain why in today’s column.

This is important to know, according to an article by Phil Fernandez of the Naples Daily News.

What’s going on at Naples’ Airport-Pulling and Orange Blossom?

Here, you’re seeing the start of foundation-related work for approximately another fifty units as the 35-acre Siena Lakes development moves westward.

Actually, it is referred to as Siena Lakes Phase 4 as well as Siena Lakes West in county official papers.

What kinds of senior housing records are being kept?

More than two years ago, the $300 million Siena Lakes project required a $352,000 “entrance fee” in addition to a $3,400 monthly service package that included utilities, a food plan, and other services. The minimum was slightly less than $400,000 and $4,071 per month this summer.

This is in line with the national trend for 2023, according to the National Investment Center’s NIC MAP Vision, which gathers data on the U.S. sector. It shows that average asking rent for senior housing has increased by more than 5% annually for the first time in the history of data collection.

“The number of senior housing residents is higher than ever.”

Additionally, according to new NIC Senior Housing and Care figures issued on Halloween, all the new complexes aren’t keeping up with the record number of people looking for such lodgings.

According to Chuck Harry, chief operating officer of NIC, “More older adults than ever before are residents in senior housing properties, which speaks to the tremendous need for senior housing and care services. Aging folks are becoming more and more in need of care and senior homes. The fact that demand has been exceptionally high for a number of quarters in a row indicates that senior housing’s care and housing are needed.”

The U.S. home care market is predicted to increase from $100 billion in 2016 to $225 billion the following year, driven by the demand for these communities, according to Nationwide Insurance.

What kind of senior home occupancy rise is this?

The NIC occupancy rate for senior housing, which is primarily comprised of independent and assisted living property types, increased for the ninth consecutive quarter, with approximately 900,000 units occupied.

And this would help explain why they are increasing throughout the area, which has the third-largest proportion of individuals 65 and older and one of the oldest congressional districts in the country.

What is causing Southwest Florida’s senior community to grow?

According to the Census, around one in six Americans falls within that group. The National Council on Aging predicts that this section will continue to increase until all baby boomers have reached that age, which is around 2030.

Those are the people who are moving here, according to an analysis by LSI Cos. of Southwest Florida published this year: “Record numbers of Baby Boomers retiring and migrating south will be the main driver of future growth in Southwest Florida.”

According to Harvard research, the number of Americans over 80 is predicted to quadruple from 12 million in 2020 to 24 million by 2035. The average age of a resident of a senior living complex is 84 nationwide.

What other senior housing developments are planned in Naples?

Here is only a small selection:

The 241,071-square-foot Grand Living of Naples, which has 200 units, is nearing completion. It is located at 15150 Tamiami Trail N., north of Kane’s Furniture, a Mercedes-Benz dealer, and a nearby shopping mall with plenty of restaurants.

Vi Bentley Village, which is almost directly across the street, intends to debut a rebuilt neighborhood part next year with 64 units that will have entrance fees starting at $2.5 million. The owners of The Gallery at Cape Coral, a 263,500-square-foot complex that is still expanding on Chiquita Boulevard off Veterans Parkway, are building 158 apartments of The Gallery of Hacienda Lakes on Rattlesnake Hammock Road off Collier Boulevard around the same time.

“We choose our sites for Experience Senior Living developments very carefully,” ESL President Phill Barklow stated. “People want to stay in Naples because it’s the perfect retirement community.”

As the need for senior housing soars in 2024, which trends are crucial?

Government control is crucial, especially in traditional nursing homes, given the growth in elder living, according to activists.

In his lobbying efforts on behalf of the Sunshine State’s elderly citizens and their families, AARP state director Jeff Johnson stated, “We anticipate further attempts by the nursing home industry to slash patient care and cut high-quality nursing staffing in Florida. We must continue to provide our residents with high-quality, safe care, and they should feel valued.”

The article originally appeared on the Naples Daily News