Top News Stories in Senior Living Management - February 2016

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Here's what happened in senior living last month.

Long Term Care Market Reports Top $300 Billion in 2015

Last year, the long term care market hit $305 billion and this growth is expected to continue, according to a Kalorama report. Women will drive the rising demand for long-term care, as they have a longer life expectancy and are more likely to be widowed, live alone, and require one of four main types of care. Men are more likely to be married and cared for by their spouse.

Affordability will continue to be a concern. The median household income for those 65 and older was $32,000 in 2015. A semi-private room in long-term care can cost $250 per day. Basic care in assisted living costs $3600 or more per month, and even home care costs range in the area of $20 per hour. Baby boomers, who represented approximately 76 million Americans in 2015, “will be making decisions about whether senior living is the right option for their aging loved ones and eventually for themselves,” says Kalorama publisher Bruce Carlson.

Source: Senior Housing News. Senior Care Market Hits $300 Billion, Demand on the Rise.

2015 Skilled Nursing Prices Hit Record Highs

After a record-setting 2014, skilled nursing prices rose another 12% in 2015 to reach $85,900 per bed. The assisted living sector barely topped its 2014 record (by less than 1%) with the average price per unit reaching $189,200. Independent living was the only sector to see a decline. Stephen M. Monroe, Editor of the Senior Care Acquisition Report, 21st Edition, 2016 said, "the record number of individual transactions in 2015 demonstrates how strong investor demand continues to be for senior care properties."

Source: Business Wire, Levin & Associates. The Senior Care Acquisition Report, 21st Edition, 2016

Willingness to Move to Retirement Communities is Stronger East of the Mississippi

Seniors in Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and Cincinnati are most willing to move into senior living, according to a new Media Audit/Cwi Associates survey. The study, which focused on media engagement, found that 65.5% of adults age 75+ listen to news, talk, and public radio. About 65% read both daily and weekend newspapers, and almost 8 in 10 have access to cable, making these mediums viable target for senior housing marketing. 

Source: Cwi Associates. How Persons Age 75+ Engage With Media And Percent of Seniors Age 65 + By Metro Area Considering A Move To A Retirement Community (pdf)

New Poll Contests Perceptions of Loneliness Among Senior Citizens

A new report from Caring.com suggests loneliness in senior populations might not be as high as perceived. Almost 60% reported never feeling lonely or isolated, and only 6% reported often experiencing those feelings. Social interaction with communities and families and higher levels of income and education are most strongly associated with positive reports. The poll also shows the majority of respondents connect with family every day (58%) or at least once a week (24%). Political affiliation and pet ownership also figured into reports, with more Democrats who don’t own pets reporting higher levels of loneliness.

Source: PR Newswire. 6-in-10 Senior Citizens Never Feel Lonely or Isolated.

Argentum: Senior Living Must Attract 1.2 Million Workers by 2025

In a new report, Argentum (formerly ALFA) suggests that demand for senior living workers will rise most in California, Florida, and Texas. Nursing assistants, home health aides, and registered nurses will be most in demand, along with thousands of personal care, food service, administrative, and maintenance positions. To make a career path in senior living attractive to more potential workers, the industry must develop certification programs in partnership with institutions of higher education to expand and promote the field, Argentum says. In addition to workforce development, Argentum identifies four more areas where the senior living will be challenged to expand: operational excellence, quality care, memory care, and consumer choice.

Source: Senior Housing News. 1.2 Million Senior Living Workers Needed by 2025

Western Senior Living Models Poised to Go Global

In BRIC countries, aging populations, emerging middle classes, lack of public sector solutions, and government incentives for private investment are converging to create an opportunity for American and European senior living companies “to begin laying the groundwork for the globalization of senior living.”

According to Forbes contributor Benjamin Shobert, this means an opportunity to export commercial and care models. Already many of China’s largest real estate and insurance companies are moving to build CCRCs with American senior care providers. While opportunity in China is most well-known, India represents an easily overlooked market where the over-60 population will increase 270% by 2050.

Sources: Forbes. The Globalization of Senior Living; liveMint. 20% of population to be elderly by 2050: HelpAge India report

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