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Can Investors Take Advantage of Baby Boomers Getting Old?

Towns and cities across the UK are set to benefit from an upsurge in Baby Boomers returning from rural areas to cities?

In a survey of 2,000 over 65s, Retirement Villages Group found that almost a third out of a projected 15.8m baby boomers by 2033 want to live in an urban area. Well over a quarter already do and the findings show that this demographic - as it gets old - wants a more connected lifestyle.

The return of the Grey Pound will be welcomed by struggling high streets, businesses, and urban neighbourhoods, with over 65s returning to towns contributing an extra £7.7 billion a year into the local economy, claims RVG. Compared to those who want to retain their rural lifestyles, Baby Boomerangs are twice as likely to go to the cinema, a third more likely to go to the pub and a fifth more likely to eat out each month.


With the population of over 65s set to rise by over 2.5m in the next 10 years, RVG is calling on the Government’s Older People’s Housing Taskforce, local councils and wider housing industry to ensure the UK is building enough age-appropriate housing on brownfield sites to cope with this rising demand. An extra 50,000 homes would need to be built each year to cope with an ageing population alone.

Will Bax, chief executive of Retirement Villages Group, comments: “We are seeing a change in attitude towards retirement and later life. Inevitably a high proportion of our customers now want to live connected to a vibrant community and the amenities that help them stay independent and active. That’s why we’re backing the call for an integrated retirement community in every town. 

“We want to put our elders back at the heart of our towns and cities, regenerating our town centres and urban neighbourhoods to create age-balanced communities, with more interesting, aspirational choices that create a pull factor. In turn, this will help free up all the old family homes currently lived in by older folks to the benefit of the wider housing market.” 

Surveys suggest that the most important things over 65s want to be close to are town centres, good public transport and a strong local community.

RVG claims that integrated retirement communities offer purpose built, amenity-led housing for older people within a community setting that helps people live independent, connected lives with support and care available when required.  They offer an integrated lifestyle with restaurants, bars, shops, community and craft spaces, with dedicated wellbeing and care provisions. They are often open to the public, enabling further integration with the local communities they serve.

The company is opening two such communities next year, 2025 - West Byfleet and Chester - followed by Tunbridge Wells in 2026.


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