Care

We are the UK's most active advisor to the care sector, and handle more than 50% of individually transacted care homes in the UK.

Demand for care businesses in the UK is underpinned by an ageing population, with the number of people over 85 years old projected to increase from c. 1.4 million in 2010 to 4.4 million by 2046.

With ongoing advances in medical treatment, people are also living longer and with increasingly complex health conditions. Given the pressure on the NHS, the private sector (including not for profit organisations) is now responsible for the delivery of a significant proportion of the care needed to look after the elderly population as well as people of all ages with long term health conditions. 

The spectrum of care provided by the private sector is therefore vast ranging from child care to care for younger adults, people with disabilities or complex health conditions and the elderly. Over many years private sector providers have developed a wide range of services to provide a complete care pathway, with investors being attracted to back these organisations by the needs driven nature of the industry.

The care sector is therefore very dynamic and ever evolving as operators seek to provide products and services to meet commissioner requirements. It is also relatively unique in terms of the number of third party stakeholders who are also involved with these including registration authorities, health commissioners, local government, central government, professional bodies and other similar organisations.
 
Our client base in the care sector is very diverse ranging from the largest institutional investors, national operators, private equity investors, hedge funds and other financial institutions to regional and local providers. We work with providers or investment companies with very large estates to operators who provide 'asset light' services such as domiciliary care and supported living. The range of organisations we act for is very representative of the market itself, with many of the largest operators being formed through an amalgamation of much smaller businesses which have steadily grown over the years.

Market activity over the past two years has been very strong and fuelled by the arrival of new and very well funded sources of capital in the form of US REITS, hedge funds, special opportunity funds and other international investors. We have also seen the return of UK Institutional investors and significant activity from the private equity community. This positive wave of new liquidity has filtered down to the regional market with the main UK banks also actively lending again and supporting operators with proven track records to develop and expand their businesses.

Funding, care quality and a shortage of nurses are some of the key challenges which the sector currently faces. Christie & Co has been at the forefront of the debate on the nursing shortage with our 2015 research document 'The UK Nursing Workforce, Crisis or Opportunity' being widely acclaimed. 

In July 2016, we published a new market leading piece of research on ‘Funding, Staffing & the Bottom Line’. This document was produced in response to the introduction of the new National Living Wage from 1st April 2016 and a number of other key issues including local authority fee rate increases following the new social care precept, revised immigration rules and other policy changes including amends to nurse bursaries.  The research undertaken for this document included a survey of 200 care home operators and every local authority. We also have a selection of videos broken down into chapters. Each provides an engaging discussion between our distinguished panel featuring Imogen Ebbs from Legal & General, Peter Hill of Caring Homes Group, Tony Stein of Healthcare Management Solutions and the Christie & Co team. Watch the event video's here

The demand for expert advice backed up by comprehensive data and deep industry knowledge has never been greater. Through our regional office network, Christie & Co is responsible for the sale of over 50% of all the individually transacted care businesses in the UK with our team inspecting on average around 60 care businesses every week for brokerage or advisory purposes. The depth of data and market knowledge which we have is market leading and higly sought after, and we advise on some of the highest profile projects both in the corporate and regional market.

A selection of our major instructions:


Former St Ives Nursing Home comes to market

Former St Ives Nursing Home comes to market

The Property is a Grade II Listed building located on The St Ives Estate, a 550 acre Country Park situated on the B6429.

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The Links Care Centre comes to market

The Links Care Centre comes to market

The Care Centre is based in Bradford, situated in West Yorkshire in the foothills of the Pennines approximately 8.5 miles west of Leeds and 16 miles north west of Wakefield.

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Christie & Co bring to market Rider House care home

Christie & Co bring to market Rider House care home

Rider House is a purpose-built nursing home dating back to the 1960’s and situated within a largely residential area of Burton-on-Trent.

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Edensor Nursing & Residential Home comes to market

Edensor Nursing & Residential Home comes to market

Edensor is located within a few hundred meters of the town centre and sea front of Clacton-On-Sea; a popular tourist town in north east Essex.

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Christie & Co bring to market Duchess Gardens Care Centre

Christie & Co bring to market Duchess Gardens Care Centre

Within walking distance of Bingley town centre which offers a range of local amenities and provides good public transport links.

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2,608

inspections in 2015

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Care homes for sale

Trends in the regions

Here at Christie & Co we deal with all types of care homes, including a wide range of nursing, residential and specialist care homes, freehold or leasehold, across the UK. We also assist every type of business owner - from the first-time buyer entering the care sector to the largest corporate operators.

Across the regions there are a number of regulatory factors as well as staffing issues which are having / will have an impact on this sector. CQC reports, a shortage of qualified nursing staff as well as the start of the Living Wage from April 2016 which will undoubtedly impact costs across the sector and lead to increased pressure on margins. This will be more keenly felt where most of the fee income is from a local authority. However, banks continue to support stable businesses and even first time buyers.

The living wage is of particular concern in the less affluent areas of the North which has been further affected by banks taking more notice of CQC reports. The market in the North continues to be tough and dominated by stock that is in distress or close to it. The real potential here come from purpose-built care homes, fully compliant and homes at discounted prices where there is a perception that value can be added as well as closed homes which offer development possibilities.

In the Midlands and Anglia region corporate disposals continue to fuel the market alongside private businesses that offer growth prospects at attractive prices. Buyers are looking to ‘future proof’ to a certain degree by requesting compliant, profitable homes and to an extent these businesses can command a premium. At the other end of the spectrum we have experienced buyers looking to add value to struggling homes or to turn them around.

The South West is seeing the return of first time buyers into the sector, however, these new entrants do not have the traditional healthcare background but more of a business or marketing one and are looking to add value and not live on site and run a care home directly.

As with all other regions in Scotland the hot topics are the national and living minimum wages especially as the funding from local authorities remains an issue. A two tier market is still very much at play here with those looking for distressed opportunities that they can acquire at low prices and then add value by improving compliance and quality. On the other hand the market will also bid very aggressively for care homes in private fee paying locations or with good compliance and solid performance.

Our insight and experise in this sector means we are able to advise you every step of the way as you embark on the process of buying a care home anywhere in the UK.