Center for Retirement Research Studies Financial Wellbeing of Senior Living Residents

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Center for Retirement Research Studies Financial Wellbeing of Senior Living Residents

Posted on April 11, 2012

Back in the 1900’s a study conducted by the National Investment Center for the Seniors Housing Care Industry (NIC) sponsored a survey on residents of Assisted Living communities and their economic status. Finding that the cost of individualized personal care of each resident  to be significantly higher than the average income, suggestions and questions  were raised on the importance of financial assistance, asset liquidation and other payment sources being used to cover the costs of care. Currently in 2012 we are finding our society on the edge of the Baby Boomer Generation, therefore raising more concerns and questions on upcoming financial wellbeing.

The Center for Retirement (CRR) recently conducted a survey that focused on the Financial Wellbeing of Senior Residents. The survey drew together collected financial data from over 2,000 seniors living independent and assisted private pay living communities. The main purpose of the research conducted by Norma B. Cole, associate director for research, and April Yanyuan Wu, a research economist both of whom practice their studies at CRR, was to better comprehend information important to both provider and consumer on financial concern and a variety of other apprehensions.

The survey drew together data based on monthly income, lifetime earnings based on Social Security Benefits , individual net worth and assets based from residents averaging in age over 80. Along with income and assets, researchers looked to see if there was any evidence of spending down of giving away of assets. The over all key results concluded by reported CRR include:

  • Residents in independent living and assisted living communities are generally mid- to high-income households who receive most of their income in annuitized forms: Social Security, pensions, and private annuities. Investment income is also relatively common among the residents.
  • Residents, for the majority, state that they do not rely on family members to pay for their care within a community but report that they are more self-reliant.
  • There is substantial geographic mobility among the residents from their previous residence, which was typically an arrangement where they lived alone or only with a spouse.
  • Many residents received non-financial assistance before they moved to their current community, either from family or another type of care community.