Lawn bowls and large gardens are out. Electric cars, cafes, swimming pools, home offices and smart home features are in.
These are some of the findings of new research by RSL LifeCare which reports on how Baby Boomers are forcing change in the retirement villages sector.
The research finds Baby Boomers - who are aged 56-74 - are moving away from traditional low-density dwellings.
They are instead demanding serviced apartments or integrated villages with the latest technology, a home office, swimming pool with an on-site café and a double car lock up garage with a charging station.
RSL LifeCare CEO Graham Millett says the Baby Boomer generation doesn’t want to age like their parents or grandparents.
“Increasingly, we’re hearing Baby Boomers are after innovative homes that make their lives easier,” Mr Millett said.
“That includes smart home features with added security allowing residents to lock up and travel around Australia or abroad.”
The RSL LifeCare research finds that 40 per cent of Baby Boomers are still working and 61 per cent expect to fund their own retirement, with that they want independence, travel and high-quality food.
“Retirement villages need a facelift in the next five years,” Mr Millett said.
“Baby Boomers’ parents were content with big kitchens and backyards for entertainment, but today it’s all about the lifestyle and convenience, this means pools with cafes, charging stations for the electric vehicles, social activities on site.”
RSL LifeCare is working on new retirement village concepts that match self-sufficient homes with independent lifestyles.
There are 5.2 million Baby Boomers across Australia, or one in four of the country’s population.
Given that Australia has an average retirement village entry age of 75, Baby Boomers are set to make their mark on the sector over the next two decades.
One significant change is expected to be that many Baby Boomers will be working later in life, compared to the generation which came before them (known as the ‘silent’ or World War II generation).
The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show that around 65 per cent of Australians aged 55-64 were still working, compared to 47.5 per cent in the same month in 2001.