The occupancy rate within majority assisted living properties declined again in December, falling to 77.7%, according to the latest intra-quarterly snapshot released Tuesday by the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care’s NIC MAP Data Service. Assisted living occupancy is down 7.4% since March, according to the report.
Among properties with majority independent living units, occupancy also fell in December, dropping to 83.5%.
The inventory of majority independent living properties within the NIC MAP Primary Markets increased by 2.7%, or 8,975 units, from year-earlier levels in the December reporting period. Assisted living saw slightly higher inventory growth year-over-year last month, jumping 3.1%.
The least-occupied market within majority independent living was Houston, which reported an occupancy rate of 73.7%. San Antonio saw the lowest assisted living rates last month, at 71.6%. San Jose, CA, reported the highest occupancy levels last month within independent living, at 91.6%, whereas San Francisco topped the list for assisted living, at 83.6%.
The news comes on the heels of NIC MAP’s release of fourth-quarter 2020 data last week. NIC found that occupancy at U.S. senior living communities — including independent living and assisted living communities — reached an all-time low of 80.7% in the fourth quarter of 2020, and occupancy in independent living and assisted living individually also hit all-time lows.