Investors in the senior living industry are feeling encouraged by recent headlines touting the significant decrease in COVID-19 cases and deaths within nursing homes as of late, thanks to ongoing efforts to vaccinate long-term care residents and staff. With the expectation that occupancy improvements soon will follow, particularly within independent living, assisted living and memory care communities, many are ready to open up their wallets, or so said a article Wednesday.

“Once we got the vaccine approved, the appetite of investors for seniors housing increased dramatically — and once the vaccine began to be distributed, their appetite increased even more,” Chad Lavender, co-head and vice chairman for the Healthcare and Alternative Real Estate Assets platform at Newmark, told the media outlet. 

Investors looking for a deal, however, may not be so lucky, said Lukas Hartwich, managing director and head of the Senior Housing Sector for Green Street. 

“The level of distress has been lower than what investors expected at the beginning of the Covid pandemic, and distressed opportunities are unlikely to emerge in a big way,” he said. “Asset values are only marginally lower — less than 5% — than they were pre-COVID.”