Monday, June 30, 2008

Golden Sunset Resorts

Yes we are talking about two resorts in one. Golden Resorts for Senior Citizens only, Sunset Resorts for others. Senior Citizen also consist of two groups-Group 1 upto 70 years and Group 2 above 70 years. In fact Group 2 includes all senior citizens who feel like over 70 years irrespective of their actual age. Group 1 would like to enjoy their new found freedom to the hilt, hence stay in cities and towns and laterally paint the CITY RED.

It is wonderful to realise that more and more parents have planned for their retirement and independent life. They have surplus income and created a ''nuclear family'' of their own. But unfortunately this phase lasts only till their health permits. Finally they also need support for their balance life span. This is the only reason for creating two groups which ultimately merge into one. At this stage Working Couples/NRI children are totally at a loss as to how to look after their parents. This is where the Golden Resort comes in.

Old Homes, run by charity or government is not a viable option. Customer (senior citizen) would like the surroundings and services to be up to the standards he can afford to pay. Since this customer can pay well, a resort can definitely be built for them. Cost of land would be the biggest huddle which can be managed if the resort is situated away from the city. Only ground floor level construction is required hence prefabricated or local material can be used provided it protects the 'customer' from the elements. My suggestions have to keep in mind that this resort is for group 2 SC who have already lost all fascination/interest for city life.

What role does Sunset Resorts play in this scheme of things? Apart from improving the financial viability of the twin project, it also serves a very vital need. Children, relatives and friends of resident senior citizens, local and NRI, can enjoy a vacation at Sunset Resort and also bring untold happiness to the resident of the Golden Resort. In fact Sunset Resort should be planned as a health resort for all. I would not be surprised if maxium business of Sunset Resorts came from relatives and residents of Golden Resorts.

Lots of exclusive schemes for senior citizens are coming in the market. These schemes are proving to be very popular and waiting list for entry is getting longer. The focus of existing schemes is outright purchase of property by the senior citizen which in turn is sold to another senior citizen once the owner proceeds on his heavenly journey. Indian psyche is not comfortable in selling the existing property and ultimately leaving cash for the children. Also a big chunk of 'surplus income' of SCs comes from investments income. Mortage schemes are yet to catch on. Readjusting this income may not be a practical option. In my module these issues do not arise as no capital expenses are involved only running expenses. You can simply check out of the resort with no hassle's of 'selling the property' in existing schemes, whenever better options come in the market.

This project has prospects of growing as a chain. For promoters of my scheme the icing on the cake is the land itself. All cities/towns are expanding outwards. This expansion would reach the resort in some time frame. Land utilisation can be re-engineered to book the potential profits and in the meanwhile serve the society in their hour of need. The entire scheme can be replicated at a new location.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Achiever's Nest

Working couples have a very tough choice to make-- To be or not to be DINKS. This is unfair just because joint family support is no longer available to most of them. I am surprised some entrepreneur has not encashed this major demand as yet. I am not referring to day schools/centres which are not a pleasant experience for majority of kids. Why not give the kids a place they would love to spend unlimited fun time, PRODUCTIVELY.

Basic Concept: To replicate the joint family system minus its negative features. Children get brothers, sisters and other relatives which their parents cannot afford. Discipline is maintained within a club like enviorment. Academic needs of the child are fulfilled as well as creative and fun opportunities provided in plenty. Child grows in a safe and protected atmosphere with no one looking over his/her shoulder all the time. In short working couples have money to spend on their children but cannot give them what they need most-TIME. We have to not only give these children a home away from home, but also any emotional surroundings which nurture achievers. Yes, a truly a Achiever's Nest. The best joint family system were producing.

Let us visualise such a place together:

  • The target group should be 5years to 15years. (flexible)
  • Instead of ayahs and servants, we can employ children from lower middle class families who seek salesperson jobs in small shops. They already have experience of looking after siblings at home
  • Groups of 6 kids (3 boys n 3 girls) are formed as a unit. Each unit given separate name/identity. This will fill the gap of brothers n sisters in today's nuclear family. Each unit would be like cousins of other units.
  • Common dormitory layout for resting, studding and playing. Separate rooms provided for music and drama classes.
  • Arrangements for assisting in home work and if necessary tutions can be made.
  • Option for hobby classes and foreign languages would be a good idea.
  • Install video cameras so that parents and other relatives can see the child enjoying him/her self and also speak to him/her if they so desire
  • Build a rain dance enclosure as children love water.

Revenue streams:

  1. Basic fee plus extra for activities opted
  2. Looking after children for short duration when parents have to attend to urgent commitments.
  3. Allowing non-resident children for attending hobby/foreign language/tuition classes.(depending on space availability)
  4. Taking in children of parents doing night shifts as the space is not being utilised and such parents would prefer a safe place rather then leaving children alone or with friends.
  5. Renting rain dance facility to families on Sundays/holidays and slots when resident children have gone home.

In conclusion, what I have started above is only a bare outline. It can be developed with creativity, as i have done for my satisfaction. The concept has potential to spread as a chain, locally and nationally. The Working Couple is doing a great job single handedly against all odds. They deserve all the help we can give so that they decide not to be DINKS. I wish I had the financial strength to implement my idea.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Greening the Family Tree

Present trent of opting for nuclear family to earlier joint family has thrown up a new peculiar situation. I tried to remember the names and birthday of my grandparents but got stuck. I could recall the names of my father and mother's parents, but not their birthdays. I had no clue about my grandparents parents. I clearly recall whenever in the past we assembled for family functions, stories about someone from the past were always recited. Surely I am not the only one who cannot recall the names of our great-grandparents.

Today I have two grandchildren. My grandchildren already have a PAN card, Passport and Bank account in their names. They would be 1 year and 2 year old in July 2008. Suddenly a brainwave struck me. The bank account could be used among other functions for greening the family tree.

Since I know the names and birthdays of my and my wife's parents the process can be set rolling. On the birthday of our parents I have started the ritual to deposit a fixed amount in the bank account of my grandchildren. This among other objectives, will ensure that my children and their children will always remember the names and birthday of our parents. Our names and the names of parents of our baburanis can be added when our grandchildren have their children. The family tree will start growing as time goes on.

Yes, the most obvious benefit apart from greening the family tree is meeting the financial needs of the child as he grows up. I personally feel this arrangement also meets a very private need which coming generations need but hesitate to accept. The importance of relegious belief in our lives. Let us see the similarities one by one:

We have not met the Gods and Goddessess who love us as family,only seen photo/idol as shown to us by elders. Same holds true for our Great-Grandparents. Someone we trust atleast vouches for them hence it becomes easier to relate and accept their bonafides. It is accepted by everyone that parents may have issues with their children, but when it comes to grandchildren only one emotion remains- LOVE nothing else matters.

The money credit in pass-book on thes special days (birthdays of G-GP) is similar to getting prasad in the temple after praying. This symbolises the responce we seek from the almighty.

If God responds to our call for help, How can we doubt our own Great-grandparents will not? Longer the Tree, more potent the responce.

Remembering our Great-Grandparents will get us the same PROTECTION and BLESSINGS which we look up to Gods to provide.

I felt so happy to remember the birthdays in order to make the deposit, I can visualise how thrilled my grandchildren would be, once they reach the age of understanding what is happening.

The entire concept has so many other facets it can be discussed at length.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hi There

This is my first post. In fact, this is the first time I am really using the Internet. Will get my bearings and start blogging soon. What about? This that and everything. I have a lot of crazy ideas which I hope somebody someday will be able to convert to reality. Until then, as my blog title says, this is all loud thinking. Anybody listening?

Do you think this is the time to exit Indian stock markets?