Industry Structure: Assisted Living
Assisted living is a sub-segment within the senior housing and nursing care market and accounts only for a quarter (25.6%) of the market. Other segments within the market are independent living, nursing care, and continuing care retirement. The segments primarily differ in the level of independence and health care provided.
Structure and Description of the Senior Housing/ Nursing Care Market
- The assisted living industry is a segment of the Senior Housing/ Nursing Care Market in the United States.
- The senior housing/ nursing care market in the United States is valued at $420.4 billion. Majority assisted living communities (communities that are more assisted living by characteristic) represent a quarter (25.6%) of the market. Other revenue segments of the market include majority independent living (18.38%), majority memory care (3.1%), majority nursing care (26.9%), and majority continuing care retirement communities (26%).
- The distribution of the senior housing/nursing care segments: (36.0%), majority independent living (14.6%), majority nursing care (42.2%), and majority continuing care retirement communities (7.2%).
- The distribution of the total number of beds: majority assisted living (20.5%), majority independent living (23.2%), majority nursing care (39.7%), and majority continuing care retirement communities (16.6%).
- The segments within the senior housing/ nursing care market differ based on the level of healthcare and independence provided.
- There are around 23,500 professionally-managed senior housing and nursing care communities (with 25 or more units/beds) in the United States. This represents 3.04 million professionally managed beds/units.
- Independent living is housing designed exclusively for seniors. It is aging-adult-friendly as it is easier to navigate and does not require any yard maintenance. Housing can be apartment type or free-standing homes.
- Independent living facilities have a commercial kitchen, dining room, and common area amenities like recreational centers and clubhouses. Residents have the opportunity to "connect with peers and participate in community activities".
- The typical services provided include "restaurant-style dining, social activities, weekly housekeeping, laundry, and transportation". Unlike assisted living, it does not provide residents "assistance with bathing, eating, and dressing; medication reminders (no administration of medicine)".
- The typical resident entry age is 75 to 84 years and the average age is 80.6 years. The average length of stay is 2.1 to 6.4 years and the average monthly rent is $3,216.
- Nursing care is assisted living with a higher level of medical care. While assisted living is primarily concerned with helping residents with activities of daily living, nursing care offers "everything from help getting dressed to using the restroom to getting in and out of bed", and daily medical care activities like changing incontinence products and medication management.
- It is primarily for those who have limited mobility, feel the need to be checked in on frequently, and require medical care on a daily basis. Nursing care facilities have nursing staff and a health clinic.
- The housing units are like hotel rooms with many rooms having shared occupancy. The average length of stay is 30 days to 2 years and the average rent is $324/day.
Continuing Care Retirement
- Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) are a form of independent living that includes skilled nursing care and assisted living services.
- Healthy adults can also choose to live in (apartments/ free-standing homes) in such communities. CCRCs allow seniors the option to live within a community for the rest of their lives. Residents tend to stay more comfortable when surrounded by familiar people, spaces, and services.
- It is an all-in-one facility that offers "health services, meals, personal care, housekeeping, transportation, and emergency help". They tend to be costlier than nursing care communities.
The overarching market can be defined as part of the long term care industry, which also includes home healthcare. However, as assisted living is essentially housing for seniors with healthcare provisions, the overarching industry has been recognized as the senior housing and nursing care market. Memory care is assisted living with special behavior/memory care and can be considered a sub-segment of assisted living.