Resiliency is one of those words we’ve heard since the start of the pandemic more than seven months ago. Along with ‘pivot,’ resiliency describes how industry leaders have risen to the occasion and made crucial decisions that affect the fate of many, including senior living operators. 

We know the senior housing industry was one of the first - and hardest - hit by COVID-19. Since then, assisted living communities throughout the country have been in the spotlight as they’ve grappled with the ramifications of the novel virus. We aren’t out of the woods yet, but one thing is for certain - these communities are resilient. Senior living operators have pivoted to implement new policies and protocols that protect the vulnerable populations that reside in these facilities. As if this hasn’t been difficult in itself,  they’ve also had to find safe ways to support the frontline workers who are putting themselves at risk every day. 

Striking a Balance in Today’s Landscape 

When the virus swept through assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and independent living communities, many were concerned about what the future would hold. Throughout the summer, occupancy rates declined rapidly, forcing providers to take a step back and rethink their response. Since then, many have stepped up to the challenge, leveraging tech and stockpiling as much personal protective equipment (PPE), cleaning supplies, sanitizer, and disinfectant as they could find. As the pandemic has progressed, senior living operators have learned what works and what doesn’t, striking a balance between keeping residents and staff safe without compromising the operation’s integrity. 

Reasons for Optimism 

The declining occupancy rates are certainly troublesome, but there is also space for optimism within the senior housing industry. While federal support for assisted living facilities has been dismal, we see positive industry trends in many cases. Millions of COVID-19 tests have been sent to long-term care facilities, and providers find new ways to alleviate financial pressures and safety concerns. 

One thing we know for certain - the senior housing industry is resilient, even in the face of a pandemic. Curious about investment opportunities or the current state of the market? Contact our team at Sherman and Roylance Real Estate Investment Services to learn more.