Senior Living Communities Using Services, Incentives to Encourage Move-Ins

The housing market downturn helped spur a variety of strategies for encouraging people to move into continuing care retirement communities, especially for those located in the New Jersey area, reports NJ.com

Services offered by some senior living providers range from personal moving consultants to vetted lists of real estate agents and cash loans.

The demographic realities and some improvement in the real estate market have breathed new life into the continuing-care industry, which is still trying to rebound from the worst of the recession.

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In New Jersey, the reasons for a real estate uptick are complicated, and Jeffrey Otteau, president of the Otteau Group, cautioned against reading too much into any one data set. Real estate values are based on local factors and it can be hard to see a pattern as it is occurring.

But, he said, there are a few undisputable facts: Homes are selling more quickly; prices are slightly off their lows; interest rates remain low, which spurs buyers, and the realization—sometimes a disappointing one—that sellers will never see the value they had at the market’s height is encouraging older owners to sell.

About a year ago, Monroe Village, a continuing-care retirement community in Monroe Township, partnered with a “financial concierge,” said Bill Brottman, director of sales and marketing.

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They will price a home and loan the owners up to 70 percent of what they deem to be a realistic sale price, which can be used to cover the cost of moving into Monroe Village, which pays the interest.

“The biggest obstacle you always hear is ‘I’m not ready yet,’ ” Brottman said. ” The other block is, ‘I still have to sell my home and the market is bad and I not going to get what I want.”

It’s one element in a package of inducements that Monroe has recently created for prospective clients. This includes offering services to help seniors downsize, pack, move and set up their new home, which, Brottman said, is sometimes more important than a loan.

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Between 2000 and 2010, the article notes, New Jersey’s overall population grew by 4.5%, while its 55+ population grew by nearly 20%—a statistic that may bode well for senior living communities going forward.

Read the full article here

Written by Alyssa Gerace