Ep. 119: Current Trends in Senior Living

Apr 09, 2024 |

Lisa McCracken, NIC's Head of Research and Analytics, offers expertise in senior living research and data-driven insights on industry trends.

In this episode, host Jennifer Drago interviews Lisa McCracken, Head of Research and Analytics at NIC. She shares her expertise in senior living research and data-driven insights on industry challenges and opportunities. She showcases practical examples of how organizations nationwide are embracing opportunities to meet the demands of a changing marketplace.

As we begin, Lisa guides us through the challenges and opportunities in serving the "forgotten middle" population of seniors who fall between subsidized housing and private options, addressing the dual burden of housing and care costs and exploring innovative solutions to bridge the gap.

Middle Market Seniors in 2024 [3:27]
Lisa discusses the findings from NIC's research on the "forgotten middle" seniors, emphasizing the dual burden of housing and care costs and the limited options for this significant group.

[7:09] Partnering with Harvard, NIC's research reveals that, contrary to belief, home care can sometimes be more expensive than assisted living.

[12:03] There is a need for hyperlocal solutions, and the multifaceted nature of addressing seniors' varying needs within the middle market should be acknowledged.

Innovations in Senior Housing and Care [14:02]
Lisa talks about how organizations are shifting focus from new developments to repurposing distressed assets to meet the middle market need in senior living.

[16:58] Lisa advocates for developing comprehensive service continuums to support aging in place, regardless of housing choice.

Strategies for Affordable Senior Living [18:30]
Lisa sees potential in Continuing Care at Home (CCAH) programs, emphasizing their role in prevention and reducing long-term costs.

[23:35] Various strategies for serving the middle market emphasize affordability and accessibility. While acknowledging the importance of exploring new financing models, Lisa highlights the senior living sector’s commitment to addressing the issue meaningfully.

A "Great Reset" for Senior Housing [24:31]
The "great reset" in the senior housing market focuses on the challenges of maturing loans, higher borrowing costs, and fluctuating property valuations. NIC’s research suggests a strong demand for senior housing amid low construction rates, signaling potential opportunities for future growth.

Adapting to Senior Housing Trends [28:52]
Lisa discusses the current pause in senior living development and the readiness of organizations to seize opportunities once the capital environment improves. She advises organizations to be ready, as once capital access improves, rapid growth in the sector is expected due to unique demand characteristics.

Learning from Early Indicators [32:17]
Senior living Boards have varying approaches to addressing financial challenges and early warning signs. By emphasizing board education and knowledge of industry trends, senior living executives can ensure their boards make informed decisions in the best interest of long-term sustainability. Lisa believes that continuous education for senior living boards helps board members to navigate industry complexities effectively.

The Governance Advantage [37:04]
Lisa values the importance of effective governance in senior living organizations, urging leaders to review bylaws, assess board effectiveness, and implement term limits for board members.

Go to https://www.nic.org/ to learn more about analytics and insights that investors and operators need for senior housing and care.

You can also follow Lisa on her LinkedIn at LinkedIn

About Our Guest:

Lisa oversees NIC’s research and analytics team, which develops actionable, data-driven insights on industry challenges and opportunities and showcases practical examples of how organizations nationwide are embracing opportunities to meet the demands of a changing marketplace. Additionally, Lisa oversees a robust research agenda with nationally recognized partners to help the next generation of senior housing and care leaders address evolving and dramatically different consumer preferences and needs.

Prior to joining NIC, Lisa served as director of senior living research and development with Ziegler, a leading investment bank for senior housing and care, where she oversaw research staff supporting the senior living, senior housing, and related corporate finance healthcare practices. Lisa began her career as a research analyst at Holleran, a healthcare and aging services research and consulting firm, where she was successively promoted to become vice president of research, managing partner and ultimately president between 2009 and 2013.

About the Show:

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