CHICAGO — The National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care will release the results of its middle-market seniors housing study this spring, NIC President and CEO Brian Jurutka said Wednesday at an afternoon press gathering before the group’s fall conference got underway.

Data will be shared in April at a policy summit in Washington, DC, that will include meetings with legislators and their staffs, and at an investor summit in New York City after that, NIC Chief Economist Beth Mace said.

The first-of-its-kind study is examining a group that previous research has ignored, NIC officials said.

“We’re looking at American seniors, and we’re breaking them up into high-income, middle-income and low-income cohorts and then specifically studying what the care needs are for that middle-income cohort,” Mace said.

Data on demographics, cognitive impairment, mobility issues and chronic conditions also will be collected “so that we have a better sense to prepare today and in the future for what the needs are of this middle-income cohort,” she said. “And we’re taking our current projections and taking it out to 2029 to see what tomorrow’s needs are as well.”

In 2029, the oldest baby boomers will be 83, NIC founder and strategic adviser Bob Kramer said, “so they’re actually getting to be real customers for senior living.”

“This is not a solutions study,” he added. “This is really documenting the size of both the opportunity, from a provider point of view, but also the size of the challenge.” It will be up to others to decide whether and how to act on the information, Kramer said.

“The hope is that in 10 years or so, there will be new products that don’t exist today,” Jurutka said.

Kramer first announced the study at NIC’s 2017 Spring Investment Forum.

New software partner certification

Also at the conference, NIC announced a new certification for software partners that facilitate operators’ submission of information, in NIC’s standard format, on the actual monthly rates that seniors housing residents pay. Software companies also must have had at least two operators provide at least six months’ worth of data using the standard report in order to be certified.

Yardi is the first company to earn the certification, NIC said.

“By incorporating NIC Actual Rates reporting as a standard feature in their software product, Yardi has enabled its operators to easily participate in NIC Actual Rates, thereby allowing operators to benchmark their own properties as well as contribute to transparency in the space,” Jurutka said.

NIC aggregates actual rates data across operators and reports them in an effort to help investors and operators understand the relationship between “asking rate,” or “rate card” pricing, and the actual rate being paid by residents. Operators that contribute data to the NIC Actual Rates report receive a complimentary report so they can compare their own data against national and, over time, metropolitan area benchmarks.

Two publications

NIC executives also announced the release of the “NIC Investment Guide: Investing in Seniors Housing & Care Properties, Fifth Edition,” which is available for purchase in the NIC online store, and the 2018 edition of the peer-reviewed Senior Housing & Care Journal.

The conference, which Jurutka said is being attended by more than 3,000 people, continues through Friday.

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