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  • Writer's pictureTim Parmeter

Senior Services Industry Spotlight


senior services franchise

As of the most recent census, the senior population in the U.S. was about 56 million. By 2030, all of the “Baby Boomer” generation will be 65 or older – in other words, there will be an additional 16.6 million seniors on top of the current 56 million. By 2040, that number is expected to reach 80 million seniors in this country. 


These changes represent a complete shift in the dynamic of our population today, and those folks are going to need services. That brings us to the topic of today’s article: the senior care industry. We will look into the different franchise opportunities here as well as some of the advantages and disadvantages of this space to help you figure out if senior care might be a good fit for you. 


Franchising in the Senior Services Space 

What are the different categories out there that touch on senior services? First off, in-home senior care options are really broken into two categories: medical and non-medical. The non-medical folks are spending the majority of the time in the home with the client, providing a host of services, whether that is helping with bathing and dressing or helping with nutrition and medication reminders. That is what franchises like Senior Helpers do in the industry. 


On the other side of the equation is the home health model, where caregivers might be going in and out of the home. They might be there for oxygen treatment. They might be there for wound care. They might be doing some sort of procedural work. Those providers have a different type of insurance and a different model than non-medical providers. But overall, those are the two types of in-home care: medical and non-medical. 


The other category you might hear about is “facility care.” If a person cannot live independently in their home, then they may go to a facility where they have around-the-clock care and services. Some senior care facilities have nurses on staff and others that can attend to them. And every now and then, you will see some facilities that are a little more niche. 


The bulk of what we are going to talk about in this article is the in-home, non-medical care portion of this industry and why it is so big. We will also discuss the industry as a whole. Is it a big industry? Is it growing? Are there really opportunities here?


Outlook on the Senior Care Industry

We already mentioned some key numbers: By 2040, the United States will be home to over 80 million senior citizens. With medical advancement and people living longer, this has led to older individuals having more needs that can be addressed via in-home care. 


So, whether older adults choose telehealth or opt to bring in someone to provide care in the home, 9 out of 10 seniors want to receive care in their homes where they are most comfortable. Plus, throw in the fact that families are not having as many children. We are more and more spread out. In the U.S., the average distance between a senior citizen and their family is 280 miles – and that is growing. 


Overall, changing social and economic dynamics have added to the demand for a professional company that can come in and help supplement the care that family can provide. Many people are looking for a provider that can help them care for aging family members with empathetic and appropriate care. 


The Senior Care Business Model

Let’s discuss a few aspects of the senior care business model. We will cover the owner role, day-to-day activities, required industry experience, investment, and more. 


Owner Role for Senior Care Franchises

Remember, as a franchise owner, you are not going to be the caregiver. You are going to be the owner. There is a common myth in franchising that you need to have tons of industry experience and background – but you are not the one in there taking care of grandma. This is a common misconception in the senior care space.


As a potential owner, you are probably thinking, “Wow, I don't want to do that work.” And good news – you won’t be. When senior care franchises (like Senior Helpers) look for owners, they are focused on the individual, their business acumen, their leadership, the traits and tools that they have acquired from prior careers and experiences dealing with people, managing people, and communicating with people. 


The Day-to-Day Life of a Senior Care Franchise Owner

What is a typical day in the life of a senior care franchise owner? What does that look like? 


Senior care is very much a “people business.” There are two sides to the people equation: You have your clientele and their families, and then you have your workforce. So, you have folks that you have to manage, hire, recruit, train, and retain. And then you have got clients that you need to educate about what services you provide and work with to do overview assessments to figure out exactly what the care plan for each home looks like. 


With that in mind, there are two directions an owner can take in this model. They can be more of an operation-centric owner – this person may be less client-facing or community-facing. They might be behind the scenes interviewing, hiring, recruiting, and using all of the training tools and resources needed to manage that workforce. 


On the flip side, some senior care franchise owners might come from a marketing or sales background. They might want to get out there and promote the business. A lot of referrals come from clinical spaces – so you have to get out there and build relationships. 


You will want to get out there and promote the business to your local market. Some owners are very adaptive and comfortable in that situation. Others want nothing to do with that. So in the senior care model, you have a tandem startup of an external and internal need for running the business. The owner can take one or the other and hire a counterpart – or in other models, they can be what you might call a “utility player” and do a little bit of both. 


Staffing and Labor in a Senior Care Franchise

Staffing and labor are some of the biggest areas of concern for clients who start thinking about owning a senior care franchise. But remember – the franchisor has done this all before. They have systems in place to support you and help you find the right caregivers. 


For instance, you will receive support with the recruiting process. They will help you answer so many questions: What are the traits you are looking for? What are questions in the interview process you are going to ask? Aside from background screens and the basics, you want to really get to know each candidate and then cultivate and build your workforce. 


You will have to wrap your head around the fact that you are going to have a big staff. The right person to own a senior care franchise will see managing a large staff as not challenging, but a challenge to build this type of culture and team. 


It is easy to see how you will have an impact on the families of your clients, but you are going to have an impact with your staff too. You may have somebody that was working at Starbucks and is tired of making lattes all day. They want to make a difference. Well, this gives them that opportunity. 


Competition in the Senior Care Industry

Now that you understand some basics, are you worried about the competition in this industry? If you just want to look at sheer numbers and you Google “home care companies,” you are going to think this market is impossible. Well, here’s the good news: In the senior care industry, it takes a relatively low client count to start building up substantial revenue. We’re talking typically fewer than 30 clients, and you are tracking well over $1M in revenue. Plus, there are a lot of seniors out there, as we have already established with the population growth going on. 


It does not take as many clients as you may think to build a successful model. And there is room for everybody. Senior care companies are so spread out, creating a very fractional competitive landscape. It's unlike almost any other industry you might be looking at. With the supply of seniors that you are dealing with and the care options that are out there, choosing in-home care is the more affordable solution for many families. 


Across the board with all of the different home care service franchises that we work with, a territory at a bare minimum is going to have 20,000 seniors in it – and usually more. And let’s say, on the high end, you need 50 clients to get to $1M in revenue. That is just 50 out of 20,000 – less than 1%. So yes, there might be competition… But all you need to succeed is just a teeny tiny little piece of the pie. 


What’s the Catch?

Hopefully, you have gained some more insight into the senior care industry. But many of our minds automatically go to the negative and ask: What’s the catch in this industry? What would make somebody fail as an owner?


If you are buying into a franchise, you are usually buying into a system and a program and a proven model. Follow the model. Franchisors see success because they have a program in place and a playbook that is pretty well laid out. So stay on the playbook.


This is not to say you are not the boss and the owner and the captain of the ship and the leader – you are. You can be all of that. You are in business for yourself, but not by yourself. You need to rely on the franchise that you commit to. Know that they really have the expertise and that they are going to support you and that their model works. If you do not have that confidence, do not buy that franchise. Follow the program that they are going to lay out. If you stick to that plan, you are going to have a very high success rate. 


If you choose to deviate from the franchisor’s plan – if you cheap out on marketing, staffing, or technology – then you can expect less success. You chose this franchise because you saw their success and you believed in the plan. So now, it’s up to you to stick with it. 


If you read this article and were nodding up and down the whole time, then maybe – maybe! – senior care is the right industry for you. But if you weren’t quite sure, don’t worry! There are countless industries in the franchising space, and when you are ready to explore them, we are here to help. 


Work With the FranCoach Team Today

If you are ready to learn more about franchise ownership, you are in the right place. Here at FranCoach, we work with our clients to help them find the absolute best franchise for them. And maybe senior care is the perfect industry for you!


Our number one goal is to properly educate you about franchise ownership. We want to help you determine if franchise ownership is the right path for you – and if so, we will guide and support you through the process of finding your perfect match. 


And the best part? Our services are 100% free, 100% of the time – seriously. Reach out to us today to learn more about becoming a franchise owner. You have read this far… so why not take the first step today toward your better tomorrow?


Find out if you’re ready for franchise ownership with this five-minute assessment quiz.

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