Occupancy Pressure Continues to Plague Nursing Care Sector

Nursing care occupancy rates fell again during the first quarter of 2018 according to data from the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC).

The occupancy rate for nursing care decreased to 86.2% in Q2, down from 86.5% in the first quarter of this year.

One of the bright spots in the data was private pay rents, which grew 2.4% year over year this quarter, but were still down 0.3 percentage points from year-earlier levels.


The seniors housing space is also suffering, as new inventory brought occupancy numbers to 87.9% during the quarter, the lowest in 8 years.

“The seniors housing occupancy rate has trended downward over the past 10 quarters, which is only two quarters short of its 12-quarter downturn during the Great Recession,” said Chuck Harry, chief of research and analytics at NIC in a statement. “Although annual absorption has averaged a solid 2.4% during this 10-quarter downturn to date, the total number of seniors housing units absorbed amounts to only 63% of the significant and sustained inventory growth during this same period.”


“Nursing care” refers to the services provided by a unit, and as a result could include units in facilities that don’t solely provide skilled nursing servicing, such as a continuing care retirement community. Occupancy in the skilled nursing sector has been continued to decline, with NIC’s most recent numbers pegging occupancy at 81.6% in the first quarter of 2018.

Written by John Yedinak

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