NIC Notes

Insights in Seniors Housing & Care


By: Omar Zahraoui  |  September 12, 2023

Senior Housing All Occupancy on Track for a Ninth Consecutive Quarter of Gains

Market Trends  |  NIC MAP Vision  |  Senior Housing

Senior housing all-occupancy is on track for a ninth consecutive quarterly gain, with a half percentage point increase in the first two months of the third quarter of 2023, i.e., July and August. The all-occupancy rate for senior housing for the 31 NIC MAP Primary Markets edged up to 84.2% in the August 2023 reporting period, up 0.1 percentage points (pps) from the July 2023 reporting period on a three-month rolling basis, according to intra-quarterly NIC MAP® data, released by NIC MAP Vision. From its pandemic record low of 77.8% in June 2021, senior housing all-occupancy increased by 6.4pps and is now 2.9pps below pre-pandemic March 2020 levels of 87.1%.

Occupancy Recovery Varies by Majority Property Type. At 85.8%, the all-occupancy rate for majority independent living (IL) properties for the NIC MAP Primary Markets inched up 0.1pps from July 2023 but remained 3.7pps below March 2020 levels. For majority assisted living properties (AL), the all-occupancy rate for the NIC MAP Primary Markets was up 0.3pps to 82.7% from July 2023 and is now 1.9pps below March 2020 levels. Additionally, as a result of this positive momentum and consistency, the all-occupancy rate for majority assisted living properties for the 68 NIC MAP Secondary Markets (84.4%) has fully recovered and is now 0.2pps above March 2020 levels of 84.2%.

The inventory of majority independent living properties for the NIC MAP Primary Markets increased by 1.0% or 3,561 units from year-earlier levels in the August 2023 reporting period. AL inventory increased by 1.2% over this same period. The pace of year-over-year inventory growth for both IL and AL continued to be relatively slow compared with pre-pandemic levels.

August 2023 Exhibit

Occupancy Recovery Varies Across Select Metropolitan Markets. The all-occupancy rate for majority independent living properties increased or remained stable in 20 of the 31 Primary Markets in the August 2023 reporting period compared with July 2023. At 84.1%, Sacramento IL occupancy saw the largest increase from the prior month, up 1.9pps but remained 6.6pps below March 2020 levels. Los Angeles IL occupancy had the largest decline and fell by 0.7pps in August 2023 to 85.5% and is now 8.6pps below pre-pandemic March 2020 levels.

For AL, the all-occupancy rate increased or remained stable in 27 of the 31 Primary Markets in August 2023. At 82.0%, St. Louis occupancy saw the largest increase, up 1.3pps from July 2023 but still 3.0pps below March 2020 levels. The AL occupancy rate in Las Vegas fell 1.6pps from the prior month to 78.2% on a three-month rolling basis and remained 3.4pps below the pre-pandemic March 2020 level.

A recent regional analysis of supply, demand trends, and Absorption-to-Inventory Velocity (AIV) ratios showed that the senior housing market’s arena is not homogenous. Distinct regional trends, influenced by factors such as demographics, economic conditions, business development policies and attitudes, supply constraint factors such as physical land barriers, operator performance and reputation, and historical patterns, shape the AIV ratios we observe today. Some regions have shown resilience, moving closer to pre-pandemic occupancy levels, while others still grapple with the ramifications of the pandemic years. As we move forward, it is essential for stakeholders to recognize these regional nuances, tailoring strategies that cater to specific regional needs, opportunities, and resident profiles. In the ever-evolving world of senior housing, being attuned to such regional patterns and insights could very well be the key to future success.

Keep track of the most timely comprehensive review of the sector’s market fundamentals and trends. The NIC Intra-Quarterly Snapshot monthly publication, available for complimentary download on our website, continues to provide a powerful and closely watched means to stay ahead of industry trends, even as senior housing markets sustain a fast pace of evolution and adaptation, amidst an apparent recovery.   

The September 2023 Intra-Quarterly Snapshot report will be released on our website on Thursday, October 5, 2023, at 4:30pm.  

Interested in learning more about NIC MAP Intra-Quarterly data? To learn more about NIC MAP Vision data, schedule a meeting with a product expert today. 

About Omar Zahraoui

Omar Zahraoui, Principal at the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC), is a seniors housing research professional with expertise in providing quantitative analysis and insights on seniors housing & care market data; building new products and reporting capabilities, including dashboards and proformas for clients and internal stakeholders; and implementing new processes and data solutions. Prior to his current role, Zahraoui worked as a data analyst, at Calpine Corporation, supporting the development of new-business strategy initiatives, analyzing sales and financial data, and developing statistical modeling of consumers’ behaviors to drive business performance. Zahraoui holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with concentrations in Finance and Management, a Master in Corporate Finance from IAE Lyon School of Management at Jean Moulin Lyon III University in France, and a Master of Science in Management Information Systems and Data Analytics from Pace University.

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