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10 NEW Powerful Senior Living Statistics

In 2011 we shared 10 Powerful Senior Living StatisticsIn fact, it was our most well-read post of all time! So we’re bringing you 10 new interesting and insightful statistics to help inform and engage those around you about senior living.

1.    Satisfaction levels at senior living communities remain strong.

For those in doubt about whether they could truly enjoy community living, the proof may very well be in the satisfaction of others.

According to information shared by Holleran Consulting LLC in a 2013 conference of 57,900 respondents from 265 senior living communities across 36 states:

  • 89.3% of independent living residents rate their overall satisfaction as good or excellent.
  • 84.5% of independent living residents would recommend their community to someone else.

Similar surveys of assisted living and skilled nursing respondents reported high levels of satisfaction in the middle to upper 80th percentile.

2.    Senior living has a secure future.

It’s no secret that the Baby Boomers are aging, but will families be ready to care for them?

A report by the AARP Public Policy Institute examined the future availability of family caregivers age 45-64 for each person age 80 and older. According to the authors, in 2010 the caregiver support ratio was more than 7.2 potential caregivers for each senior over the age of 80. By 2030, it drops to 4.1 to 1 and by 2050 only 2.9 to 1.

“More than two-thirds of Americans believe they will be able to rely on their families to meet their needs when they need long-term care,” said Lynn Feinberg, AARP senior policy analyst and one of the report’s authors. “But this confidence is likely to deflate when it collides with the dramatically shrinking availability of family caregivers in the future.”

3.    Learning new skills is key to a healthy mind.

Researchers at the Association for Psychological Science say that completing word puzzles probably won’t bring noticeable benefits to an aging mind. However, those who participated in continuous and prolonged mental challenges, like taking up photography or quilting, showed marked improvement.

“It seems it is not enough just to get out and do something – it is important to get out and do something that is unfamiliar and mentally challenging, and that provides broad stimulation mentally and socially,” says psychological scientist and lead researcher Denise Park of the University of Texas at Dallas. “When you are inside your comfort zone, you may be outside of the enhancement zone.”

4.    How does your community stack up?

The median cost for home health services across the nation is $20/hour, up 1.39% from last year. To see how your community’s rates compare in assisted living, home health or nursing care, check out this great tool from Genworth Financial. There’s an iTunes app too!

5.    We can’t ignore mobile website traffic.

Analysis of website traffic for the over 80 senior living communities we work with at GlynnDevins reveals that approximately 1/3 of website traffic is coming from a mobile device. This information combined with data shared from PEW Research Center about older adults and technology use, 42% of older adults with an annual income of $75,000 or more own smartphones.

6.    Reputation and recommendation are critical to occupancy.

Nearly 60% of independent living residents who participated in customer satisfaction surveys fielded by National Research in 2012 visited two or more residential communities prior to selecting the one they decided to call home. 44% of those surveyed cited reputation and recommendation as the reason they chose the senior living community, followed by location at 40%.

7.    Family members of residents living in CCRCs are more likely to consider a CCRC in the future.

In a survey by Mather Lifeways Institute On Aging, 77% of family members of residents would be likely or very likely to consider a CCRC lifestyle in the future. This is good news as we prepare for the onslaught of Baby Boomers who will be considering a retirement community in the not-too-distant future.

8.   Perception is not reality for long-term care needs.

According to Age Wave, most people vastly underestimate the likelihood they will need long-term care. While 37% of people age 50+ believe they may need long-term care in the future, the reality is that twice as many eventually will (70%).

9.    Families often take the financial burden.

According to Age Wave, “Family members are increasingly turning to each other for a financial helping hand. Six in ten (62%) of all those age 50+ provided financial support to adult children, grandchildren, parents and/or siblings during the last 5 years.” In contrast they say, “There is a clear benefit for having family discussions and planning ahead for potential family challenges. Those who have had financial discussions with their spouses or adult children are almost twice as likely to say they would be well prepared if they were to face family challenges.”

10.    Occupancy trends are up.

According to a press release by the National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing and Care Industry, the average occupancy rate for senior housing in the first quarter of 2014 was 89.8%, an increase of 0.1% from the prior quarter and 0.8% from a year earlier. As of the first quarter of 2014, occupancy was 2.9% above its cyclical low of 86.9% during the first quarter of 2010.

While we know some markets still face occupancy challenges due to competition or other factors, this is a positive outlook for the future.


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