Prices for senior care increased in all census regions and care types in A Place for Mom’s first National Senior Living Price Index, which shows recent cost trends in senior housing and care throughout the United States, the Seattle-based organization announced in a release.
"With nearly 10,000 baby boomers turning 65 every day, most families do not know how much assisted living or memory care can cost and helping them understand this major expense is an important mission of A Place for Mom," said Sean Kell, chief executive officer of A Place for Mom. "Our pricing index is unique in that it reflects transaction prices based on actual move-in rent and care data from our work with over one million families. This data sheds light on important trends impacting the senior living market and can help equip families and seniors with the real information they need to financially plan for the next stage of their lives."
The National Senior Living Price Index represents a sample of A Place for Mom's overall referrals for families, focusing on monthly fee data collected for 10,000+ senior living communities (independent living, assisted living, memory care), including 80,000 move-ins for seniors from January 1, 2011 – December 31, 2014.
From this unique research, A Place for Mom has identified several trends related to pricing within the senior living market, including:
- Prices continue to increase across all census regions and care types through nearly every time period in the study. Prices hit record highs in 2014.
- A Place for Mom's National Senior Living Price Index finds that assisted living prices across the country are actually higher than reported by three alternative sources of senior living price information.
- The cost of Independent Living is out-pacing inflation. The mean monthly rent for an independent living community increased 8.3% from 2011-2014, while inflation only increased 5% over the same period.
- The price of Independent Living is increasing fastest in the South at 3.9% per year, and the Midwest at 3.1% per year.
- Among census regions, costs for Memory Care and Assisted Living are growing fastest in the West and Midwest. Memory care costs rose 2.2% per year in the West and 2.1% in the Midwest. Assisted Living saw a price growth of 1.7% per year in the West and 1.9% per year in the Midwest, exhibiting the fastest price growth per year.
- The price of senior care in the Northeast is 10-20% more expensive than the other regions of the United States. Of the three segments analyzed, Memory Care exhibits the largest differential in price between the Northeast and other regions. The cost of living in the Northeast is also the highest of the four census regions.
"In developing the National Senior Living Price Index we saw an opportunity to create a tool that would help families plan for the care of aging loved ones, while also providing a tool for our network of senior living communities to track this evolving industry on a broad scale," said Ed Nevraumont, chief marketing officer at A Place for Mom.
Monthly and annual costs can vary by person and depend on a variety of factors related to room type and required care services, which are often assessed by a community prior to a resident moving in. After move in, the cost can vary further depending on the progressing needs and acuity level of the senior, which are assessed regularly by the community. Additionally, the geographical location of the community can impact cost – Midwest vs. Northeast vs. South vs. West; city, suburb or rural. Several additional influencing factors include, but are not limited to the following:
- Room and Board:
- Size, floor plan and amenities of the room or apartment
- Services and features offered by the community
- Additional fees for pets, parking, motor scooter or chair, etc.
- Care Services:
- Medical conditions and the required amount of administration and monitoring of medications
- Mobility of resident
- Need for assistance with daily living activities (bathing, toileting, dressing, grooming, feeding, etc.)