Malaysia's Increasing Aging Population and Elderly Housing Trends
According to the United Nations’ criteria, a nation with a senior population (65 years and above) ranging from 7% to 14% of its total population is categorized as an aging society. Malaysia, as reported by the Statistics Department in October 2022, is gradually entering this phase, with the elderly (65 years and above) estimated to make up 7.3% of the total population by the end of 2022 or early 2023.
Trends in Senior Housing Development
The Malaysian census of 2020 revealed a significant increase in the elderly population, reaching 6.8% or 2.2 million people. While Malaysia hasn’t officially crossed the threshold into an aged society by UN standards, the trajectory from 2010 to 2020 indicates an imminent shift toward an aging demographic.
This trend potentially accelerates the growth of elderly real estate. Models from developed countries like the US, UK, Japan, and Singapore offer valuable insights. These properties prioritize accessibility, safety, essential services like healthcare facilities, restaurants, and retail stores, all complemented by good air quality, low pollution levels, and convenient transportation.
Key Developments in Elderly Real Estate
Several regions in Malaysia are experiencing increased demand for elderly housing. Places like Perak, Kedah, Selangor, and Sarawak have witnessed significant aging populations. Initiatives like “Sunway Sanctuary,” a residential project by Sunway Healthcare Group, mark the emergence of premium elder housing linked to hospital facilities.
Another project, “GreenAcres,” initiated by Total Investment, is shaping up to be the first comprehensive retirement village in Peninsular Malaysia. Costing RM100 million and spanning 10 acres, this development aims to cater specifically to retirees, offering a secure environment and various amenities.
Customized Services and Foreign Investment
These developments target not only local retirees but also foreign retirees seeking comfortable and affordable spaces. Cities like Penang and Kuala Lumpur are attracting foreign retirees due to a balanced lifestyle, lower costs, and favorable living conditions.
With Malaysia’s “My Second Home” program, welcoming foreign residents, the housing market is also eyeing potential investments from expatriates and retirees. The country’s allure lies in its peaceful living, healthcare services, and relatively low costs compared to Western nations.
Malaysia’s burgeoning aging population signals a rapid growth phase for the elderly real estate market. As the country becomes increasingly appealing to retirees and expatriates, it’s crucial to consider tailored housing solutions that cater to this demographic’s unique needs.
As Malaysia ventures into developing retirement villages and elderly housing, it’s essential to draw insights from successful models globally while adapting to local cultural nuances. The housing market, aiming at both local and foreign retirees, must focus on affordability, comfort, and accessibility. Embracing these trends ensures a sustainable and comfortable future for the elderly population.
[Image source: Image by Lifestylememory]
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