Upside, the “deconstructed senior living” company formerly known as UpsideHom, is adding caregiving and other service offerings to the mix with the launch of a new service called Upside+.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based Upside’s partners with apartment complexes and to lease units to older adults. In its original incarnation, the company connected older adults with units in suitable multifamily buildings, without a layer of services.
But this month, the senior apartment placement company added a new service to connect older adults living in Upside units with dedicated and certified caregivers to come to their dwellings and perform services such as non-clinical care management.
Members can also through Upside+ gain access to referrals to “top-tier” physicians and medical specialists, meals and transportation.
They also have access to Papa Pals, a service offered through the in-home companionship company Papa. Through that service, Upside members can get help with companionship, everyday tasks or transportation.
Upside Co-Founder and CEO Jake Rothstein was also a co-founder of Papa.
Rates for the service are all-inclusive and usually around $6,000, though members can take or leave certain services. Members can also pause services while they travel.
To facilitate the care delivery, Upside has partnered with TheKey, a home care agency formerly known as Home Care Assistance.
For a company that originally staked its future on moving older adults into “deconstructed” senior housing arrangements, adding care to the mix may seem like a step in the direction of more traditional senior living. But the launch of Upside+ was more to meet a need that residents said they had, according to Rothstein.
In fact, nearly a third of the company’s members had asked for an option like Upside+, he added.
“As people age with us, there has been a need for a graduated level of care.” he told Senior Housing News. “People are coming to us and saying … it would be really beneficial for someone to come in and help.”
The launch of Upside+ is also meant to appeal to older adults who might need some of the services of an independent living community, but don’t want to live in one.
“The people that call us every day are the ones that are saying, ‘Hey, listen, I’ve explored traditional senior living — independent or assisted — and it’s just not for me,” Rothstein said. “That’s a certain value proposition that we’re finding.”
The flexibility of monthly rates is another perk for prospective residents. Members can pick and choose the services they receive, and in turn affect the rate they pay each month.
Looking ahead, Upside has a goal to expand into 100 new markets across the U.S. by the end of this year. And the company is on track to meet that goal, currently operating in 78 markets across 22 states.
“The goal is to expand Upside+ strategically in many of those 100 markets,” he said. “You can think of this sort of like a hub and spoke model where we will have these higher-acuity, higher-level-of-care centers around lower-acuity, more independent communities that we operate.”
Although the company is adding some of the services offered in a senior living community, Rothstein has no plans to expand into the sector — at least, for the foreseeable future.
“If the need should arise, we’re always open to everything,” he said. “But we’re going to let the customers pull us in that direction, if that is what they want.”