Roughly seven in 10 organizations report that the pace of move-ins has decelerated in the past month for their independent living, assisted living and memory care segments, according to data collected last week from owners and executives at 118 seniors housing and skilled nursing operators nationwide. Move-in deceleration among nursing care segments continued to remain relatively stable, with approximately 80% of organizations reporting a month-over-month decline.

The survey was conducted by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care. This report marks the fifth installment of findings from NIC’s weekly Executive Survey of operators in seniors housing and skilled nursing.

The most common reason cited for the deceleration in move-ins continues to be slowdowns in leads conversions / sales due to moratoriums on moving residents into communities to mitigate COVID-19 contagion among residents and staff. More respondents in the latest two weeks of the survey, however, cited an organization-imposed ban on settling new residents into their communities than in waves 2 and 3 of the survey.

In other NIC-related news, one seniors housing real estate expert believes investors are likely to see at least another six to 12 months of painful capitalization rates as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In a NIC Leadership Huddle webinar Thursday, Steve Blazejewski, managing director of PGIM Real Estate, said that as headlines about the spread of the virus among seniors and the pressure being put in facility margins and operating expenses, the volatility and pause in deal-making may continue for quite some time.

He still believes in the sector’s bright future, however, with the demographic wave coming and forecasts that the industry will see a lot of searching for yields in the capital markets and from institutional investors

“I’m very contrarian by nature, but I actually do believe that this is the time to be investing in this sector,” Blazejewski said. “As we look at this environment, it’s a very favorable one for us to be in.”