The Forgotten Middle

A lot of solid data has come out in recent months from NIC regarding the senior middle-income population that will not be able to afford private-pay senior housing and care options, nor will they qualify for Medicaid.  It is concerning because that is such a large percentage of the country’s population.  Per the NIC report, the number of middle-income seniors will nearly double to 14.4 million by 2029.  It is predicted that over half of them will not have the financial resources for senior housing and healthcare as it is priced today.

There was a great session at the NIC conference in Chicago recently discussing this topic.  It is a private sector issue to tackle in regards to developing more affordable housing communities.  It is a public sector issue to tackle by developing tax incentives targeted to the middle market and possibly expanding Medicare coverage as well as subsidy programs to help close this gap of affordability.  As far as the timeline to get some traction on this front, it is interesting to note that the oldest baby boomer doesn’t turn 83 until 2029 and then that “Silver Tsunami” really comes!

On the private sector/development side we feel there are opportunities thru smart design and construction that will help with development costs.  It’s time to get creative with community prototypes that may be amenity-lite with some common space square footage taken out but that are still service-rich and an attractive place to call home for our seniors.

The Douglas Company looks forward to continuing to work on this initiative with our clients to come up with a win-win solution for them and our middle-income seniors!

Don Diedrick
Director of Business Development

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