Assisted living sees record-setting unit prices

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Average per-unit prices in the assisted living market reached $193,650 in 2016, topping the previous record set in 2015 by 2%, according to research from the upcoming 22nd edition of “The Senior Care Acquisition Report” to be published by Irving Levin Associates.

Although the independent living market did not set a record in 2016, the average per-unit price increased 18% over 2015's average of $228,150 per unit, which was still lower than the 2014 record of $246,775 per unit, according to the research.

Investors are attracted to independent living, however, because they “continue to believe that demographics will support strong valuations in the long run, even if interest rates rise,” said Stephen Monroe of Irving Levin Associates.

The average independent living cap rate rose by 20 basis points to 7.2% from a record low of 6.96% in 2015, according to the firm's data.

The overall seniors housing and care market was more active in the second half of 2016, according to Irving Levin Associates, but the increase in activity was not enough to lead to a new  record number of acquisitions to top the record-setting year of 2015. In 2016, there were 337 publicly announced acquisitions in the seniors housing and care acquisition market, a 6% decrease from 2015. The dollar value of the disclosed acquisitions, however, was about $14.4 billion, a 1% increase over the value of disclosed 2015 acquisitions.

Like 2015, few transactions topped $1 billion in 2016 — there were two in 2016 and had been one in 2015, and all were valued at less than $1.2 billion, according to the report. By comparison, Irving Levin Associates said, 2014 saw five such transactions totaling $9.7 billion.

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