Now that the Federal Reserve has started winding down the stimulus measures it implemented to help the economy after the recession, senior housing providers are increasingly paying attention to any clues that the Fed gives regarding when it might raise interest rates so that they can prepare for the effects of an increase. However, in addition to keeping an eye on the Fed, industry participants should also keep an eye on other factors that affect demand for their services, particularly the aging of the nation’s population. The U.S. Census Bureau is an excellent resource for information on this subject and recently released a detailed report that includes numerous data points that senior housing providers should be aware of. Providers that familiarize themselves with this report can use it to improve their operations and gain an edge on their competitors. As they enhance their operations, they should also continue to look to the Chicago-based financing firm Cambridge Realty Capital and the many differentfinancing programs that it offers for whatever capital needs they have.
Information from the Census Bureau
According to the Census Bureau’s Special Studies Report, the percentage of the population that is 65 and older increased from 4.1% in 1900, to 13% in 2010, and, largely because of the aging of the baby boomer generation, it is now expected to reach 20.9% by 2050. As the percentage of seniors living in the U.S. grows, more senior housing communities will be needed to provide the care and services that are needed by this group. Also according to the report, in 2010 roughly 40% of people who were 65 and older had at least one disability that prevented them from climbing stairs, walking, or performing errands by themselves. While these individuals do not require the number of services provided by a nursing home, they can benefit from the types of services that are provided by assisted living communities. Accordingly, assisted living owners and operators should take note of this and consider targeting this population with marketing efforts that are tailored to their specific needs.
With respect to the financial resources of older individuals, the Census Bureau found that housing costs were less of a burden on older households in 2009 than compared to 2001. This is important because the U.S. was still in a recession during the first half of 2009, and if housing costs were less of a burden than in 2001, it stands to reason that they’re even less of a burden now because the economy has improved the last few years. This is important for senior housing providers because it lets them know that not only are the number of seniors living in the U.S. growing, but the resources that they have to purchase senior housing services are growing as well.
In terms of geography, the report notes that in 2010 the states with the highest proportions of seniors in their populations were Florida, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maine, and that they all had senior populations above 15%. The report also mentions that between 2000 and 2010, the western and southern parts of the country experienced the fastest growth in their 65-plus and 85-plus populations. This data is important because it lets senior housing providers know which states and regions could be rich targets for their services and gives them an idea on which parts of the country they should consider focusing.
Lastly, with respect to ethnic breakdowns, the report reveals that between 2000 and 2010, the percentage of seniors living in nursing homes that are minorities increased. This data shows that this segment of the senior population is a growing market and that senior housing providers should consider making changes to their marketing efforts to account for this.
Cambridge Realty Capital Can Provide Senior Housing Capital
The plethora of information on the nation’s changing demographics that is in the Census Bureau’s report makes it clear that not only is the nation’s population getting older, but there are also important differences with respect to where these populations are increasing the fastest, what types of financials resources they have, and what types of senior housing facilities they use. This information can help providers improve their operations and marketing efforts and accordingly, they should consider familiarizing themselves with the report so that they can take advantage of the valuable information that’s in it.