Lynne Moore headshot
Lynne Moore

Q.  Will active adult living experience the aging-in-place challenges experienced by other living arrangements in the senior living and care continuum?

A.  Not in the short run, but there could be challenges in the longer term.

Active adult apartment living still is a relatively new senior housing option that has been gaining popularity from an owner/operator, developer, investor and consumer perspective. The industry still appears to be grappling with what exactly it should be called and what needs to be offered to attract a younger senior population. We can be fairly sure of one thing, however: that residents are going to age-in-place, and there is likely to be some “acuity creep” as the community ages.

Current experience tells us that the average move-in age into active adult housing is 72 to 74 years old. In eight to 10 years, those residents will be 80 to 84 years old. Some of those aging residents will want or need some support services and will expect that those services can be delivered into their apartments. And, as frequently happens, they will resist to moving to another level of care. Some may stay in their apartments longer than they should.

This is the nature and cycle of senior living. Many of those future challenges can and are being addressed in several ways. Successful active adult communities must plan for and develop creative approaches to address aging-in-place while also effectively maintaining the integrity of the “active lifestyle” offered at the community. Some of those approaches will be described in a future column.

Lynne Moore is president of MDS Research Co., a national senior living and healthcare consulting firm based in Fort Worth, TX, that has been serving clients for 48 years. MDS is a two generation company — she is following in Jim Moore’s footsteps. Moore is responsible for all MDS market research-related projects involving all aspects of senior housing and healthcare. Lynne Moore can be reached at (817) 731-4266 or [email protected].

This column appears in the August 2022 print issue of McKnight’s Senior Living magazine as “You’ve Got Questions . . . We’ve Got Answers.”

The opinions expressed in each McKnight’s Senior Living guest column are those of the author and are not necessarily those of McKnight’s Senior Living.

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