What if there is more to the decline in seniors housing occupancy than just new development?
Sometimes it seems I just think too much about this industry. For instance, it has been bothering me that occupancy continues to decline, even in quarters when it should be rising. New development has been having an impact, of course. But what if there is something else going on, or maybe multiple things? A lot is going to happen, and change, between now and when the first boomer turns 80 in 2026, and we may have to wait until they are 85 or even older for the “big impact.” Everyone has been focused on this demographic, and there is the often discussed thought of, what if we increase penetration rates by just one percentage point? That would solve all our problems, right? But what if the penetration rate starts to drop as the boomers age into seniors housing? What if they delay a move into seniors housing by another year, or two, or never? What if there is a new, different option? What if they move back into the cities? I hope to start putting forward some of my ideas in the next few months, not because I am negative on seniors housing, but because we all need to start changing the way we view the industry, and its future.