Outlook for CCRC occupancy depends on type of community

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Lana Peck
Lana Peck

Occupancy at continuing care retirement communities, also known as life plan communities, is trending upward overall, but some types of communities are experiencing higher rates than others, according to Lana Peck, senior principal of the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care.

Peck reviewed data available to those who subscribe to the NIC MAP client portal Wednesday in a blog post.

Overall, CCRC occupancy hit a cyclical low in the second quarter of 2013, when the rate was 89.5%, she said. Since then, however, occupancy has been improving, although in the third quarter it was 20 basis points below the second-quarter high of 91.2%.

Regarding types of communities, Peck said that not-for-profit CCRCs are leading for-profit communities when it comes to occupancy. In fact, the difference in rate between the two is near a recent high, she said, with the rate at not-for-profits at 92.3% versus 87.4% at for-profits.

And although occupancy for CCRCs with entrance fees has hovered around 92% for the past eight quarters — and that's where it was in the third quarter, Peck said — occupancy at rental CCRCs is trending downward and was at 89.2% in the most recently completed quarter. The two types of communities are experiencing one of the widest gaps in occupancy recorded, she said.

Rental CCRCs saw negative inventory growth in the third quarter after two quarters of peak or near-peak levels. This community type has had only two quarters with positive annual absorption since the second quarter of 2015, Peck said.

“Negative growth is often a result of units being taken off line and may reflect units being combined into larger residences or shifted to assisted living,” she said.

Read the blog post here.

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