They’re an easy target for late night talk show hosts and bemused younger adults, but seniors aged 70 and older are more dialed in and technologically adept than they’re given credit for. A recent AARP study found that adults 50+ currently spend $640 million on tech devices alone. Experts predict that as Baby Boomers age that figure will grow to $84 billion by 2030.

Busting the myth of an inept older generation unsure how to navigate “the internets” is a must for senior living providers who need to understand their older adult consumers if they hope to capture more of this important market share.

Senior Living Occupancy Rates

Senior living occupancy rates have remained relatively stable since the high of 90.2% in the fourth quarter of 2014. But there was a softening in the 1st quarter of 2019, with the rate dropping 2.1 percentage points to 88.1 and another .3% in the 2nd quarter to 87.8%. The numbers vary greatly from market to market with analysts pointing to factors like new zoning and regulations, shifting demographics, and local economic performance.

What do all these statistics really add up to? Senior housing occupancy is at its lowest level since the 2nd quarter of 2011. This changing landscape in senior living presents a real challenge to operators who must continually seek out and offer new amenities that seniors demand and can afford while creating a revenue stream that supports their implementation.

The Benefits of Custom Designed Medical Grade Wi-Fi®

Wi-Fi is a hot topic in senior living these days. Sadly, the talk is often centered on how frustrating it is. Medical Grade Wi-Fi®, much like enterprise wireless infrastructures that businesses use, can be the starting point for occupancy success. It offers senior communities a valuable opportunity to provide better care and enhance the quality of life for their residents which, of course, makes their properties more appealing.

Benefits include:

  • High capacity, high-reliability networks that can handle large numbers of devices.
  • HIPAA-compliant security.
  • Seamless, wall-to-wall coverage to ensure the ability to roam across the facility without losing signal.

Medical Grade Wi-Fi® is also designed to eliminate single points of failure and deliver signal strengths of -65dB or greater. And with maintenance and service as well as 24/7 monitoring services included in the cost, the service more than pays for its implementation.

Senior Living Communities are Listening

As the next generation of seniors makes the move to assisted living, many senior communities are transforming themselves to meet their residents’ tech expectations. High on the list is quality internet service that includes campus-wide wireless capabilities. That over 80% of CFOs surveyed said they have invested in internet connectivity over the past year shows communities are listening and working to deliver what seniors are looking for. This investment can be an important differentiator when trying to appeal to new residents.

Keeping up with the latest technologies and the changing demands of seniors is imperative if you want to keep housing options enticing to new residents. Moving forward, winning communities will be those who understand giving residents what they truly value is a great way to make their property more attractive, improve resident retention, and increase occupancy rates.

Contact HealthSignals today to learn more.

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