ASU startup introduces novel new way to find senior care
ASU startup Late Living is revolutionizing the way people search for and make decisions about senior care, introducing a cutting-edge approach to helping families find independent and assisted living for older adults.
Late Living provides floating walkthrough video tours of independent and assisted living facilities on its fully integrated website, LateLiving.com. After a year of proving the concept, developing the website and building backend support systems, Late Living is now out of beta and has fully launched the site. The company is in full-scale client acquisition mode, looking to add facilities throughout the Phoenix metropolitan area to its roster of clients.
LateLiving.com gives family members anywhere in the country the ability to tour multiple facilities without ever leaving home, helping families cut unnecessary costs and decrease search time. There is no cost for seniors and their families to use the website, which in addition to the video tours includes information about amenities, pricing, levels of care, therapy programs and more.
Late Living protects users’ privacy by placing prospective residents in direct contact with the facilities instead of giving their information to third-party placement agencies, which typically take between 75 and 150 percent of the first month’s rent as a referral fee when they successfully refer someone to a facility. Connecting prospective residents directly to the facilities allows Late Living to charge a flat-rate referral fee that’s significantly less than agencies’ fees. Because the website is video-based, all of the human bias and unethical practices are removed from the decision-making process for families.
"I'm very impressed with what Late Living offers,” said Jon Scott Williams, executive director of Fellowship Square – Mesa, a retirement community in Mesa, Ariz. “I've been in the senior living community sector for over 25 years, and I've never seen anything like it. The quality of the video is absolutely amazing, and we have implemented our virtual tours with great hopes of helping seniors and their families tour our community from anywhere in the country using any platform, including mobile devices.
“We've already had over 110 video views in less than a week, and we can't wait to see the response from our prospective residents,” Williams added. “I've told many of the other senior communities I work with that they need an online video tour done by the team at Late Living. They have a great idea, a great service and they are very responsive team to work with."
Late Living also makes the search process much simpler for families. Instead of relying on one family member to do the work of finding and evaluating facilities, families can use the site to make decisions collaboratively, regardless of distance. LateLiving.com allows users to register on the website and save their favorite facilities, make notes about them and share them with friends and family. Family members can then make comments on a user’s favorites and start the discussion and decision-making process, even though they might be time zones away. A unique feature of the website is that it also shows how many beds or apartments are currently available, which helps families that need to make a decision quickly.
Late Living founder Chris Wilson was inspired to launch the company when he realized that it’s easy to book a hotel or even buy a house online, but the process of finding an independent or assisted living facility is often extremely difficult and time-consuming, particularly when family members are spread across the country. He made it his mission to improve the experience.
“Our research shows that a typical search for senior care used to take three to four weeks, but families that use our website can cut that time down to only three or four hours,” said Wilson, who is a recent graduate of ASU’s W.P. Carey School of Business. “This makes the entire process less stressful and facilitates better decision-making while also allowing people to share their searches with other family members across the country in real time.”
Late Living is a winner of the Edson Student Entrepreneur Initiative at ASU and recently won ASU’s Innovation Challenge as well as the ASU Venture Catalyst Rapid Pitch Competition at the Arizona SciTech Festival. They are also one of the first entrants into the MAC6 incubator and business accelerator program in Tempe, Ariz.