There is a new business which has seen a sudden boom in the market and that is retirement homes. It used to be called old age home a while back and anyone living there was looked upon with sympathy and despair. But that is not the case anymore, retirement homes are no longer a taboo subject for parents or their children. Today these new age retirement facilities for many of our senior citizens are a place for peace and serenity.

Only a few years ago the very thought of old age home to an elderly person was a heartbreaking news. These places were looked upon as the “destination of abandonment” of one’s parents; a sad and final bon voyage to a life spent taking care of one’s children and many times grandchildren. Old age home became a place for abandon destitute of a sad group of people who came to this place just to wither and die. And this was true to many old people who had no choice but to spend the last remaining days, lonely and sad because traditionally in India it is expected by the parents that their children especially the son will take care of them in their golden years. But many times it did not happen and parents are left at these places for many a reason.

So many young Indians left our shore and set up new life in a new country and when the time came either they did not want their parents to be part of a their new life or the parents did not feel comfortable living in a foreign country where it can get very lonely for them. Anyways, no matter what the reason was, old age home was a word tantamount to sacrilege in Indian society and anyone who had to live there for any number of reasons always were looked upon with sad eyes.

But somehow over the last decade a change has taken place and old age homes were rebranded as retirement homes, a place where senior citizens can live a life of serenity in a tranquil environment. Maybe this concept has gained acceptance due to the fact that people who were in their 30s and 40s during the liberalization boom in India during the 1990s were able to make a considerable savings and are now accustomed to a lifestyle which might be getting cramped by living with their children. Or it’s just that as most of us who, living in cities, prefer to live in apartments and are finding it very difficult to have more than 3 or 4 members living in the same house because of space and privacy.

I remember living with my parents and grandparents under one roof for years and did not have any problem with regards to space or privacy. But one cannot blame the current generation who are now in their 30s and 40s who have taken full advantage of India’s economic growth and children of the millennial who do not know life without the internet.

This is now not only a very viable option for many people, but this is in fact fast becoming a booming business and the prospect of making money is very high. Everyday news of a new retirement facility being constructed with attractive offers hit the market and it is going to be the next big venture for various realtors and construction companies.

Now days the old age a home are no longer dreary but looks more like a resort facility where senior citizens are kept engaged with various activities which keep them engaged. Photos of vibrant and joyful senior citizens can be seen on newspaper ads or the internet. In such places one does not have to worry about cooking or cleaning and doing laundry.

Everything is taken care for them and people who live in these facilities do not have to lift a finger. This whole retirement facility has now become a concierge service.

Money can buy almost anything in this world; however there is sad and dark side to all of this. It seems they could reject application for some people who are not keeping that well because they want healthy old people and they do not come that often. They may tolerate basic ailments like back and knee problem and other problems attributed to old age, but anyone with a condition which requires consistent medical checkup will likely face difficulty due to return on investment by the service providers.

None the less the joy of spending your golden years with your family is no substitute to living in a retirement facilities no matter what comforts one may enjoy. But this does not mean the importance of living in a retirement facility is bad and all the comforts which come along with it. In the end, if the option of going to a retirement facility is a genuine choice but not compulsion, then nothing like it



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