ANNAPOLIS, Md. — The National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC) has awarded an 18-month research grant to NORC at the University of Chicago. The grant will fund a research study of the middle-market seniors population — those between the lowest and highest income levels.
NORC, which was originally named the National Opinion Research Center, will seek to define and quantify the middle-market population of seniors, which will help NIC understand and anticipate the future housing and care needs of that population.
“Better understanding middle-market seniors is essential for policymakers and the private sector to adequately address the future housing and health care needs of baby boomers,” says Bob Kramer, CEO of NIC. “With massive numbers of Americans about to enter their senior years, we must ensure that we have ample affordable, quality housing and care services.”
By 2030, the 65-and-older population will increase by 50 percent to 74.1 million, according to NIC. These seniors are expected to live longer and have more chronic health conditions than previous generations. Many will lack adequate retirement and long-term care savings, but exactly who these seniors are, and the size of the middle-market population, remains relatively unknown.
“As is true in every sector, including housing and healthcare, planning for the future requires a sophisticated understanding of the affected population and their unique needs,” says A. Rupa Datta, senior fellow and vice president at NORC. “Understanding the middle-market senior demographic is an essential element of good policy planning and providing more and better choices in seniors housing and care.”
NORC’s analysis will present socioeconomic, health and functional, psychographic and demographic characteristics of America’s middle-market senior population to help policymakers and the seniors housing and care industry anticipate their needs. NIC plans to share the results at a national event in 2018.
“As federal and state budget pressures continue to intensify, providing this increased transparency on the middle-market seniors population will be essential to attract capital and stimulate private-sector investment,” says Beth Burnham Mace, chief economist of NIC.