Updated: May 28, 2019
Elderly people are a valued part of our society, much like the ones who strive to help them.
You may want to help older folks in some way, but can you get paid doing it? If so, how?
Believe it or not, the opportunity is massive within this space and according to the numbers, things are only getting more promising. From odd jobs to full blown business opportunities, you can absolutely make money helping the elderly and I’ll show you some of the best ways you can do this.
But before we dive into that, let’s take a look at the state of the industry…
The Elderly Care Market
According to a US census report, people who were born post-World War ll (known as baby boomers) will all reach 65 years of age and over by the year 2029. The same report states that an ageing population will continue well into the future, with baby boomers projected to outnumber those aged 18 years and under in the coming years.
From a business perspective, the ‘elderly care market’ is expected to grow at the rate of 6.3% per year and reach some $400 Billion by the year 2018 which means there is a lot of potential here. And after doing some digging, I found that ‘in-home health care’ is the fastest growing segment.
This is especially true since the US government introduced the PACE program. This gives for-profit companies funding, who in turn provide home health care services to over 55’s. According to some reports, this actually works out cheaper for the government than covering the costs of full-time care in a nursing home through the traditional Medicare system. As a result, there has been an increasing number of companies looking to cash in on this opportunity and it’s driving growth.
Sounds great… but what kind of opportunities exist for little old me you say?
Well, when you are trying to figure out what kind of opportunity exists, it’s important to first identify the key problems people are facing within this space. Look at the problem first, then think of a solution you could offer. Makes sense right? Let’s dive in…
The most obvious problem elderly people face is deteriorating health, which means they can’t always do the things they used to. It’s unfortunate, but a fact of life. It happens to all of us at some point.
Basic tasks such as mowing the lawn, cleaning the home, walking the dog and general home maintenance were once easy jobs, but now they’re near impossible. Eventually, things get even worse…
While few people like these, aged care facilities exist for a reason. There comes a time when anyone who lives long enough, will check into a nursing home. Let’s face it, no one wants to be cooped up in a place like that all day which is why many hold off on this for as long as humanly possible. It’s only natural to want to enjoy your freedom and live in your home for as long as possible.
So, in a nutshell, the problem is elderly folks need help getting stuff done and they also want to remain in their home for as long as possible.
The obvious answer to this problem is providing in-home care to the elderly in one way or another.
You’ve got an ageing population who naturally wants to stay at home as long as possible, and a government who actively encourages this with their new private company funding project.
The writing is on the wall. Here are 7 ways you can tap into this potential…
#1 Start An In-Home Senior Care Franchise
It turns out it’s not just for medical based in-home care that is in high demand. There are many franchise opportunities out there that teach everyday folks how to start a business providing quality in-home care to the elderly without needing a medical degree of any kind.
If you can find the right company and get the right training, this could be a very profitable business endeavour, but it’s also the highest cost and highest risk out of the bunch. Starting franchise can easily cost upwards of $20k so this won’t be for everyone.
#2 Run Errands For The Elderly
Running errands is one of the most popular and growing ways to help elderly folks who simply can’t get around like they used to. Whether it’s doing a run to the post office or grocery store, or doing some banking, there are plenty of regular errands to run.
Most errand runners charge an hourly rate of somewhere between $15-$45 per hour, with the average being around the $30 per hour mark. Considering how simple this is to start, the incredibly low startup costs involved, and the fact that pretty much anyone can do it, that’s pretty awesome money!
#3 Start a Senior Concierge Service
This is similar to an errand running service, but encompasses more than just picking things up, and dropping them off. The best way to think of this is a personal helper who organizes things, takes care of certain duties and may even provide transport to and from various activities.
For example, you could mind your clients home after dropping them off the doctors. Perhaps they have a pet that needs looking after while they are away for a couple of hours, or they need you to let someone in to perform a task, like a cleaner for example.
This role also includes organizing tasks like home maintenance, vehicle servicing, medical appointments, planning holidays and so on. There are many different tasks you could do, it’s whatever they need. Although you should specify what you aren’t willing to do upfront such as manual labour, to avoid issues down the road.
Similar to an errand business, the startup costs are low and is normally based on a similar hourly rate.
#4 Odd Jobs and Maintenance
There are countless jobs people need doing around the home. When elderly folks need something done, but are not physically capable, this is where you come in.
Here are some example jobs you could do:
- Mowing the lawn
- Weeding the garden
- Edging the footpath
- Indoor and outdoor maintenance
- Small jobs and repairs
You don’t need an special qualifications to do this stuff, just find out what people need done, and do it!
#5 Dog Walking
Believe it or not, this is a growing need. Many people are looking for someone to walk their dog. Whether they are too busy or not physically able, the need is there. It’s a simple gig, and will keep you fit.
The going rate for this job is around $25-$30 per hour which again, is decent considering how easy it is.
#6 Provide a Home Cleaning Service
Everyone needs their home cleaned, and this becomes increasingly difficult as age kicks in. There’s no shortage of cleaners out there, but you could specifically target the older generation and distinguish yourself as someone that offers the most value to this segment.
For example, you could provide a seniors discount and market specifically to the elderly. You could offer unique value aimed at elderly people, like combining one of the above services with your cleaning service at a discount. By doing this you will become known as the “go to” person who offers great value.
#7 Start a Niche Website
This is something most people wouldn’t think of, but it’s actually one of the best ways to make money.
The idea is to start a website that provides the elderly market with useful content they are actively searching for through Google. When they land on your website, you can promote relevant products to them through a process called affiliate marketing. This means you get paid a commission to promote other people’s products online. It’s simple, and it works.
What products would you promote?
Elderly folks spend a LOT of money online each year in general, so you don’t need to be limit yourself to only promoting “elderly products”. But… for example sakes, one idea might be to promote “Safety Wearable Technology” products that cater specifically to senior citizens.
Wearable technology is a massive niche in itself, but some products cater specifically to the elderly. For example, some will track fitness metrics as well as sleep patterns, blood oxygen level and heart rate etc. There are also some exciting innovations set to be released within this space which do even more.
What would your website be about?
Again, many possibilities here. One idea is to start a website about “fitness for seniors” where you delve into the practically endless topics they are searching for in order to better their health and fitness. The aim of the game is to publish useful content targeted at whatever the person is searching on Google. These search terms are called “keywords” and you create content based on these that help people.
I personally use a keyword research tool called Jaaxy which shows you how many people are searching for a given keyword and how much competition there is. Using our example of “fitness for seniors” I did a quick bit of research and came up with the following keywords/ article ideas:
The two most important metrics are circled above in orange. The “Avg” means how many are searching for it, and the “QSR” is an estimate on how hard it will be to rank. Generally, anything under 100 QSR is easy to rank for if you follow the right process.
As you can see, there are tons of relevant keyword ideas here and by creating a website with content targeting these, you can promote relevant products on your site. Like wearable tech from Amazon.
Joining the Amazon affiliate program is free, and anyone can sign up. Once you get into the swing of things, you can absolutely create a passive income this way. The startup costs are very low and the returns can eventually be quite high. Keep in mind there is some learning to do and it will take time to master. But anyone can do this and it’s well worth the effort.
If you are passionate about helping the elderly, there’s no shortage of possibilities to do this and get paid, online or offline. The great thing about doing something you are passionate about, is you will stay the course until you achieve your income goals and have a rewarding experience while you are at it.