Deciding to open an assisted living facility can be a rewarding yet overwhelming experience if you are unsure of the requirements. As with any business opening, starting with a solid business plan can help you learn about regulations and other details that you should consider before moving forward.
You’ll probably want to start by writing an assisted living business plan with the following aspects:
- Executive Summary
- Company Overview
- Market Analysis
- Organizational Structure of Your Company
- The Services You Offer
- A Sales and Marketing Plan
- Request Funding if Needed
- Financial Projections
- An Appendix, if needed
Knowing the details of what it will take to open and operate your assisted living facility will depend on quite a few factors. Keep reading to learn what should be included in each section of a business plan for your assisted living business.
Every business plan should start with an introduction to your business to give those who read it a basic understanding of what you will be doing. Like most writing pieces, a business plan should capture the reader’s attention in the first section.
The Executive Summary section of your business plan is designed to highlight essential information that you want people to know about your business. This information should include mission statements, products and services, leadership, employees, location, and basic financial and growth data.
This section of your business plan should briefly describe details about your assisted living facility plan and its likelihood of success. It is vital to ensure that you use powerful words that show confidence in your business idea.
Your mission statement should be proactive and explain the purpose and vision for the assisted living facility. This statement serves as the foundation for how you build your overall business.
Also included in the executive summary are the basic details of your company to give readers an idea of what your business is all about. This information should consist of a high-level overview of the basics of your business, such as financial and growth projections.
When it comes to creating a business plan, it is crucial to include every detail you can think of. This is because the plan serves as a kind of operations manual that will help you get your assisted living facility up and running.
The Company Overview is designed to give a more detailed explanation of what your business entails. The description should include what you are trying to accomplish and who you will serve by opening your assisted living facility.
When opening a new business, one of the essential considerations is outlining what your company will solve problems. This typically means that it will solve a current issue in the community where your business is located.
In addition to what you are attempting to accomplish with your business, it is also essential to understand the target market. Since you are opening an assisted living facility, this means that you will be focused on the elderly community that can still live on their own but needs some assistance.
Finally, this section should also include information about the following:
- Your company’s advantages over others in the area.
- Information about experts in your leadership group
- Location advantages.
Keep in mind that this section is dedicated to allowing you to brag about your future business.
Analysis of the Assisted Living Market
Knowing what other assisted living facilities exist and are doing in the community where you are building your business is essential for building a solid business plan. Finding out everything you can about what the market looks like can give you a hand up in creating a new model.
Every successful business starts with analyzing the market that already exists in the community. To be competitive, you will need to know what has worked for other companies in the area and what trends are successful in the assisted living industry.
Discovering the current trends and topics in the assisted living market can help your company start at an advantage. When you analyze the market, you can find out things that are working for other facilities and implement them in your business.
Additionally, market research will help you learn how to deal with regulations that govern assisted living facilities. As you observe other companies, you can get a better idea of how they handle certain situations and figure out how to do it in a better way.
Organizational and Management Structure
Another critical step in creating a unique business plan is defining your assisted living facility’s organization and management structure. Knowing how your company will make decisions and who will be in charge of various aspects is something that some people struggle with.
Knowing the organizational and management structure of your business can assist in creating a smooth transition when you are just starting. Creating this section of your business plan will eliminate much confusion about how things will run in the assisted living facility.
In this portion of the business plan, you will need to define the legal structure of your business, which you will file with the proper entities. Depending on your situation, you may be looking at registering your assisted living company as a sole proprietorship, a limited liability company, or LLC, or even a partnership.
Understanding which entities apply to your business can be overwhelming; however, you should find information online to assist you in this decision. Once you have defined the legal structure, you can move to other company administrative areas.
The other part of this section deals with defining the business’s management structure, including who will be responsible for what within the organization. If you already have employees or management lined up, their resumes can be included in your business plan.
Services For Your Assisted Living Facility
While it is essential to know how your business will operate, it is equally important to understand what services you will provide and how these services will work. This is especially true when you open an assisted living facility where some things could be vital to the client’s health.
The services you will provide for your clients need to be entirely outlined in your business plan, so others will understand exactly what you are offering. The information should include certain benefits to clients and research to support the facility.
When it comes to providing services for an assisted living facility that deals with clients who can live independently with some assistance, you will need to consider what they may need daily. This could mean that you need to have medical professionals either on staff or on call to help.
You will also need to outline the following:
- Other services you plan to offer such as activities of daily living
- How much assistance you plan to provide
- What staff will be required to provide such activities
- Along with the services, you should also mention what will be needed to make clients want to live in your community.
Lastly, if you have done specific research and have found studies that back up some of the services you will be providing, you should include them in this section. This information will show that you are considering research-based services and will increase your credibility.
Marketing & Sales Plan
One area that people often question when working on their business plan is how they will market and attract clients to their assisted living community. While building the structure and services of the business is essential, you also need to have a solid marketing plan to bring clients into your business.
Marketing and Sales is an area that is like the icing on the cake. You can have a solid business idea and even have your building, management team, and services created perfectly; however, if you do not create a marketing plan that draws clients, you will not have a successful company.
Building this portion of your business plan means thinking through the entire marketing and sales process. You should ask yourself the following questions:
- How will you put the word out to potential clients?
- What will you do to retain them?
- What can you do to make them want to live at your facility?
These are all questions that should be answered in this section of your business plan. Investors and other interested parties will want to know how you plan to approach these questions. You must be detailed entirely with your answers.
It is also essential to ensure that you include how a sale will take place in your business from start to finish. You should take the time to describe the sales process and what software or programs you will be using to facilitate the sale.
Requesting Funding for Your Assisted Living Facility
You should know whether or not you have the funding to make your dream of opening an assisted living facility a reality by this time. If you do not have any or all of the capital you need, then you will need to include this section in your plan to request funding for your facility.
Funding is ultimately the most crucial part of opening a business, and whether you are using your own money or needing the help of others, you need to know what options are available. Knowing how much money you need over the next five years can give investors an idea of whether you are a reasonable risk or not.
If you have come this far in your planning, then you probably know exactly how much money you will need to operate your business for the foreseeable future. This also means that you should know how much outside funding you may need to meet these needs.
It is vitally important that you are very detailed in your explanation about funding, especially since you are most likely going to need the help of others. Describe the specific terms you are proposing, along with the time you will need to cover these funds.
Finally, you will need to be specific about what you will use the money for, whether it be equipment for the facility, building materials or expenses, salaries, and so on. Do not forget to include how you plan to pay the money back.
Financial Projections for Your Assisted Living Facility
No business plan is complete without having to discuss the facility’s financials as a whole, including what you see for the future of your company. While it can seem overwhelming to include information about things you are not sure of, your reader will need to know that you are a stable company with solid financial plans in place.
Financial projections are a way to show off how successful your business is or will be within the first few years. This section should include projected income statements and balance sheets to provide a projected outlook for the foreseeable future.
If you are already in business and are creating the plan to seek additional capital, you should include financial statements from the last several years. This will show the current economic situation of your business. You will also need to have projected statements for the next few years.
If you are a brand new company, you will be basing this information on your research, and it should match the information you provided in your funding request section. You must be specific when you are forecasting projections for your facility, possibly even including shorter-term projections along with longer-term predictions.
Finally, this section should break down your financial statements into income, balance sheets, expenses, and cash flow. Keep in mind that while they are fictional, these numbers should be based on your research.
Once you have completed your business plan to show investors and other interested parties the details behind your facility, it is also essential to include any specific information that they may need. Knowing what to have can sometimes be confusing.
The appendix is the business plan section that is designed to hold additional paperwork that may be needed to make final decisions. This may include credit reports, licenses, permits, other legal documents, resumes, reference letters, and more.
When it comes to finalizing your business plan and figuring out what information you should include in this section, you can look back to the various areas of the plan itself. If you referenced a particular type of document, it should be included here.
Opening a new business can be overwhelming and frustrating at times; however, it is always best to include everything you think you should rather than leave out a vital piece of information. Investors and others involved in the business process may frown on inferences to certain documents that were not included in the plan.
Overall, building a business plan for an assisted living facility can seem overwhelming; however, if you follow the steps outlined above, you should be able to put one together in no time. Keep in mind that the business plan is typically viewed as the heart and soul of your business and should be treated as such.