Average initial rates for residents moving into independent living, assisted living and memory care segments were below average asking rates amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with monthly spreads generally largest for memory care. That’s according to the second quarter Seniors Housing Actual Rates Report released Tuesday by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care’s NIC MAP Data Service.

The report found that the average discount for the memory care segment was the largest of the three care segments in June, averaging 8.5% below average asking rates. This equates on an annualized basis to an average initial rate discount equivalent to approximately one month, less than the 1.5 months reported at the end of 2019. The initial data set includes 25 to 30 senior living operators representing more than 2,500 properties and 300,000 units.

The report also showed a monthly variation in initial rate discounts by geography and segment type during the second quarter. Of the three metropolitan markets being reported by the NIC MAP Data Service — Atlanta, Philadelphia and Phoenix — Atlanta’s memory care segment had the largest discount in initial rates relative to asking rates, with a discount equivalent to 2.7 months. This was the largest recorded discount of initial memory care rates in Atlanta since January 2017, according to NIC. Phoenix’s memory care segment also reached its highest recorded discount of initial memory care rates at 2.6 months (annualized) in June. 

“Understanding discounting trends can be particularly helpful in light of the ongoing pandemic as operators think about incentives and move-ins in a new way,” NIC statistician Anne Standish said.