Demand for elderly homes and facilities to grow in Saudi Arabia

24 November 2023 2 min. read

As the number of Saudis entering retirement grows, demand for senior living solutions is expected to expand strongly in the coming decade, necessitating policy adjustments from both the healthcare sector and the government.

In Saudi Arabia, there is an apparent shift visible in home preferences and a major adjustment in lifestyle brought about by the increasing number of elderly people entering retirement.

The trend of retirement living aims to ease the transition for those aged 60 and above (the current retirement age in Saudi Arabia), moving from conventional housing to specialized facilities, aligning with broader societal changes. This is according to a study by Knight Frank based on the views of over 1,000 Saudi nationals.

Demand for elderly homes and facilities to grow in Saudi Arabia

What’s driving demand

Several key factors are driving the demand for retirement housing in Saudi Arabia, including the increasing life expectancy of people, a growing aging population, and shifting social dynamics.

According to Knight Frank, the life expectancy of Saudi’s has jumped from 62 in the 1980s to 78 today (2022 data), mainly due to improved access to healthcare and better nutrition.

An increase in life expectancy means that people live longer, and therefore may require varying intensity of care through their retirement years.

Saudi Arabia’s elderly population is expected to expand by 3.2 times to 3.6 million by 2035. This demographic transition will result in a dependency ratio of 5 seniors for every 100 individuals in the workforce by 2050.

Meanwhile the growth in the number of people that can afford retirement communities offering quality healthcare and wellness services is lifting demand for elderly homes and facilities. At the same time, the growing population of ultra high net worth individuals and high net worth individuals is driving increased demand for high-end retirement communities, thanks to their substantial disposable income.

Demand for elderly homes and facilities to grow in Saudi Arabia

Another key driver: Saudi Arabia hosts a significant expatriate population, exceeding 40% of the workforce, mainly originating from the MENA region and South Asia. These individuals may opt to remain in the country for retirement, seeking a higher quality of life compared to their home countries.

Nations with well-established healthcare systems are likely to attract seniors who prioritize their health and well-being. Accessibility to an abundance of public and accredited private sector healthcare facilities can serve as key reasons why retirees opt to spend their well-deserved elderly days in a country.