What's your level of preparedness for starting an assisted living facility? Read this article and see if you are ready or if you still need to spend more time on your plan.
It's not secret that assisted living facilities have become attractive target to entrepreneurs. With the number of Americans aged 55 and older expected to double between now and 2030, assisted living facilities have the potential to become cash cows for early entrants into the market.
However, the fast growth of the assisted living facilities is also making the industry highly competitive. Starting an assisted living facility isn't an easy process. But it's made even more daunting by the stiff competition you will face once your facility is up and running.
Licensing and certification is a major obstacle for assisted living facility startups. State governments regulate the assisted living industry and require startups to complete a comprehensive licensing process prior to launch. Contact your state government about licensing requirements before you commit to a startup timetable.
In addition to clearing licensing and certification hurdles, your business plan needs to address the operational and financial realities of assisted living facilities. Issues like bed capacity, disability services, staff requirements, and much more will need to be decided before you can accurately plan your facility requirements.
It's almost always more economical to purchase an existing assisted living facility than it is to build one from scratch. But when new construction is the only option, the advantage is that you can build your facility to the exact specifications of your business model. It's also easier to market a new facility than it is to lure clients into an outdated building design.
Regardless of the size of your facility, there are specific staffing requirements for assisted living facilities. Medical professionals, food service workers, housekeeping staff, facility managers, event coordinators – although some of these functions can be combined into a single job description, you'll need to recognize the fact that state requirements may influence hiring practices and staff certification requirements.
Best Practices for Assisted Living Facility Business Plans
If you haven't written one before, an assisted living facility business plan can be a frustrating business requirement. If it's comprehensive and well-written, however, your business plan will serve as a strategic anchor point and a calling card for external stakeholders.
After you have written you plan, you'll also need to develop a strategy for your next steps.
To optimize the impact of your plan, it's important to consider a distribution strategy. To help monitor your progress, you'll need to implement a system for tracking business plan distribution in your startup.
Long before you open an assisted living facility in your area, it's essential to determine what the competition looks like. Try our link below to find competitors in your city. After following the link, enter your city, state and zip code to get a list of assisted living facilities in your area.
If there's too much competition, it may be wise to consider starting the business in a less competitive marketplace.
Finding a Non-Competitive Business Mentor
If you want to open an assisted living facility the next step is to speak with somebody who is already in the business. If you think owners of nearby assisted living facilities will give you advice, think again. The last thing they want to do is help you to be a better competitor.
However, an entrepreneur who owns an assisted living facility on the other side of the country may be willing to share their entrepreneurial wisdom with you, provided that you won't be directly competing with them. Indeed, many experienced entrepreneurs enjoy offering advice to startup entrepreneurs. In my experience, you may have to call ten business owners in order to find one who is willing to share his wisdom with you.
Want the scoop on finding an assisted living facility manager that lives outside of your area?
We can help. Follow the link below, try a few city/state combos or zipcodes, and then start calling!
Branding Advantages of Buying an Assisted Living Facility
Startup assisted living facilities typically suffer when it comes to brand recognition because unlike entrenched competitors, new brands lack visibility and history with their customers.
To compensate, one of the techniques entrepreneurs use is to buy a business to get an established brand. As a startup, the best you can hope for is to gradually develop brand awareness over a period of months and years.
However, an assisted living facility acquisition can put you at the helm of a brand that is already highly trusted by your target market.
Explore Franchising Options
Your chances of achieving the entrepreneurial goal of doing well with your venture are much greater if you opt for franchising in lieu of doing everything yourself.
Before opening an assisted living facility, a smart move is to investigate whether there are good franchise opportunities available that might help you on your entrepreneurial journey.
The link below gives you access to our franchise directory so you can see if there's a franchise opportunity for you. You might even find something that points you in a completely different direction.
These additional resources regarding getting started as an entrepreneur may be of interest to you.
If you already are in business and came here to learn about growing an existing assisted living facility, these resources will come in handy:
If you sell to assisted living facilities, we've got better information for you elsewhere on our site. These resources are more appropriate for you:
If you are still exploring all of your options, please browse our directory of guides below.