Senior Housing Shortage Looms: Investment Opportunity Knocks

An aging population, longevity, and an increasing need for long-term care services create a need for more senior housing and long-term care facilities. A current shortage places more pressure on families.

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Senior Housing Shortage Looms: Investment Opportunity Knocks
5 Min Read June 28th, 2024

A looming crisis is on the horizon for senior housing in the United States. According to NIC MAP Vision, the leading data provider in the senior housing industry, a critical shortage of senior housing units threatens to leave millions of older adults without adequate care options.

The crux of the problem lies in a rapidly growing senior population. The number of Americans aged 80 and older is expected to surge in the coming decades, and this surge in demand is outpacing the current rate of senior housing development.

The United States and Canada are experiencing a significant demographic shift driven by an aging population. According to the U.S. Census Bureau as of July 1, 2023, there were over 78 million people aged 65 and older in the United States, representing roughly 23% of the total population. This number is projected to continue climbing steadily, reaching an estimated 90 million by 2050, translating to nearly one in four Americans being 65 or older.

Canada paints a similar picture. Statistics Canada reports that in 2022, over 18.8% of the Canadian population, or roughly 7 million people, were aged 65 and over. This figure is projected to rise to nearly 25% by 2060, with the number of seniors exceeding the number of children under 14 for the first time in Canadian history. 

What is Senior Housing?

Senior housing encompasses a range of living options specifically designed for elderly individuals, typically those aged 75 and above. These communities offer varying levels of care and services to cater to diverse needs. Some common types of senior housing include:

  • Active Adult: Focuses on independent living with a strong emphasis on social activities and amenities.
  • Independent Living: Provides housing for mostly independent seniors who may require some assistance with daily tasks.
  • Assisted Living: Offers assistance with daily activities like bathing, dressing, and medication management for seniors who need some support.
  • Memory Care: Specialized assisted living for individuals with Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia.
  • Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs): Offer a full spectrum of care, from independent living to skilled nursing care, allowing residents to age in place.

Investment Opportunity Emerges

NIC MAP Vision's "Senior Housing Outlook" report highlights a projected shortfall of 550,000 senior housing units by 2030. This translates to a staggering $275 billion investment gap. However, this shortage presents a golden opportunity for investors in the senior housing market.

Arick Morton, CEO of NIC MAP Vision, says that the growing demand also creates financial opportunities for investors.

There's a significant generational opportunity for investors in senior housing development and acquisition. As demand for senior housing grows, investing in this sector will result in substantial returns and long-term growth.

Market Challenges and Silver Linings

The senior housing industry has faced recent challenges, including the pandemic, labor shortages, and rising interest rates. However, with these obstacles gradually easing, the market is ripe for investment.

Morton emphasizes the long-term potential.

We see the longer view. The demand is high and the current supply insufficient, making it an ideal time for investment in this sector.

Call to Action: Accelerating Development

The report underscores the urgent need to significantly increase the pace of new senior housing development. Currently, new construction starts are at a historic low. Development needs to accelerate to more than triple the current rate to meet the projected demand. Industry experts warn that without immediate action, the senior housing shortage will leave many older adults without proper care options.

We are critically behind in taking care of our aging population. We simply don't have enough senior housing inventory in the pipeline, so we must act now to develop senior housing to help meet this demand.

The cost of senior housing that provides long-term care services is increasing dramatically due to increasing demand, longevity, and labor shortages.

Assisting living facilities have become popular as couples can remain together even if one is independent. Assisted living facilities are much less institutional, offer more privacy, have many social activities, and still provide the needed help with daily living activities, and light supervision that many older adults require.

With an increasing number of people having Long-Term Care Insurance, policyholders are using benefits to pay for assisted living if care at home is less practical and there is no need for a more formal and institutional nursing home.

Health insurance, including Medicare, only pays for short-term skilled care. Medicaid will pay for long-term care services for those with limited financial resources in Medicaid-approved providers.

Finding Senior Communities and Long-Term Care Facilities

Navigating the world of long-term care can feel overwhelming for families. Finding the right caregiver, senior community, or long-term care facility for a loved one in need can be a daunting task. Several factors contribute to this challenge:

  • Limited Options: Depending on your location, the availability of quality care options might be scarce. Factors like geography, specialization (memory care, for example), and desired level of care can further limit choices.
  • Information Overload: Researching and comparing different facilities or caregivers can be incredibly time-consuming. Sifting through a sea of websites and brochures can leave families feeling lost and confused.
  • Hidden Costs and Fees: Understanding the true cost of long-term care can be tricky. Facility brochures might not clearly outline additional fees, and navigating insurance coverage can be complex.

LTC News Caregiver Directory: A Solution at Your Fingertips

Fortunately, there's a valuable resource to help families streamline their search. The LTC News Caregiver Directory, the nation's largest free database of caregivers, senior communities, and long-term care facilities, empowers families to find the care they need with just a few clicks.

This user-friendly directory allows you to search for providers based on specific criteria, including location, type of care needed, amenities offered, and even cost estimates. Detailed information on each provider helps you compare options and make informed decisions.

With the LTC News Caregiver Directory as your guide, finding quality long-term care for your loved one becomes less stressful and more manageable. Families can focus on what matters most — ensuring your loved one receives the care and support they deserve.

Care providers and facilities can claim their free listing and upgrade it at a minimal charge to be able to stand out from the crowd.

The LTC News Directory Business Portal offers the opportunity to claim a free listing or upgrade for enhanced visibility. 

As more care services, senior communities, and long-term care facilities open or expand, marketing will become a primary concern, and the LTC NEWS Caregiver Directory can be a big part of that plan.

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About the Author

An LTC News author focusing on long-term care and aging.

LTC News Contributor James Kelly

James Kelly

Contributor since August 21st, 2017

Editor's Note

LTC Insurance can be a crucial part of your retirement plan providing a financial safety net to cover long-term care expenses, protecting your income and assets and reducing your financial burden. Since health insurance, including Medicare, only pays for short-term skilled care, an LTC policy ensures access to quality care, preserving your income and assets and easing family burden.

However, long-term care is more than just a financial issue – it is a family issue and an LTC policy eases the physical and emotional burden that loved ones face when you need long-term care giving them the time to remain family instead of caregivers.

The ideal time to acquire LTC insurance is in your 40s or 50s. Your reasonably good health today allows you to obtain coverage at the lowest cost. For those in their 60s and older, affordable options are still available, depending on health.

Find a qualified, independent Long-Term Care Insurance specialist representing the top insurance brands to help you find the most affordable options based on your age and health.

An LTC specialist will ask you detailed health questions before giving you accurate quotes from all the top-rated insurance companies that offer long-term care solutions. 

Get Help Processing an LTC Insurance Claim for a Loved One

LTC NEWS will help you process claims from any Long-Term Care Insurance policy. In partnership with Amada Senior Care, a nationally recognized in-home healthcare agency, we will help make sure your loved ones receive the quality care you deserve by getting the benefits from their LTC policy quickly with the least hassle. 

Even if your loved one does not have a Long-Term Care policy, Amada can provide free case management and develop an appropriate care plan.

This service comes at no cost or obligationFiling a Long-Term Care Insurance Claim.

These four LTC NEWS guides will assist you in trying to find appropriate long-term services for a loved one:

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