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Survey Shows Seniors Prefer Assisted Living Over Other Types of Care

Kimberley Fowler
By Kimberley FowlerSeptember 11, 2018
Survey Shows Seniors Prefer Assisted Living Over Other Types of Care

Although research has historically shown that seniors prefer to age in place, a new survey offers an interesting perspective about senior housing preferences – showing that seniors prefer assisted living over other types of care.

Learn more about the survey and what it could mean for the future of senior living planning.

Seniors Prefer Assisted Living Over Other Types of Care

In recent years, independent research and published studies have led us to believe that the main goal for most aging seniors is to remain at home. In fact, the AARP, in their 2016 survey, found that “90% of older adults nationwide want to remain living in their homes for as long as possible.” The concept of ‘aging in place’ has been well documented and government-led projects, such as the National Institute on Aging, provide information dedicated to “growing old at home” and ensuring seniors have the tools to arrange for proper care at home when the time comes.

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However, a new Key Private Bank survey suggests that this may not be the case for all seniors, especially those individuals with “high net-worth.”

The survey, which polled 150 financial advisors who work with high net-worth individuals on long-term care planning, suggests that while remaining at home is still the preferred living arrangement for seniors who are “completely independent.” “moving to an assisted living community… was a close second, by far topping being cared for by family or professional caregivers at home or moving to a nursing home.”

Some of the compelling statistics offered by the survey include:

  • 96% of those polled reported that being independent at home was their clients’ top choice
  • 93% of those polled said that assisted living came in second
  • 11% of those polled said their clients would choose home care
  • 1% of those polled said their clients would choose nursing home living.

While this survey offers an interesting new perspective about aging in place and senior housing preferences, there are several other things to consider, including:

  1. This study does not offer the first-hand perspective of seniors themselves. The financial advisors reporting the facts and information may not fully understand the true desires of their clients, which could result in some bias.
  2.  This study only takes into account a small population of seniors – those who are considered “high net-worth individuals” and who also have access to long-term planning investments with a financial advisor.
  3. This survey pool is quite small – 150 participants (especially second-hand accounts) do not accurately portray the opinions of most seniors.

While the results from the survey are certainly valid, they do not paint the full picture of seniors and their housing preferences. However, the survey does corroborate concerning facts that have been published by many other reputable sources.

McKnight’s Senior Living reports that seniors are not planning early enough, “nor are they communicating enough with children and family members about their wishes and future plans.” In fact, Key Private Bank’s survey revealed that approximately 55% of the advisors polled reported that “only some clients are discussing long-term plans with children and other family members,” while 22% of the advisors polled reported that “hardly any are doing so.”

This brings a whole other area of concern to the forefront of how emotionally and financially prepared seniors will be as they age over the next 20 years.

Do you prefer assisted living over other types of senior care? Do your beliefs align with what was reported in this survey? We’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

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Kimberley Fowler
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Kimberley Fowler

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