The pandemic saw a halt in many types of construction projects, including those for senior living. However, that pause appears to be over, and the growth from before the pandemic has returned. Now, firms find themselves recruiting for construction jobs, and those in search of a career in the industry have numerous opportunities.
Figures on the Recovery
Occupancy in independent and assisted living construction rebounded to a modest degree in the third quarter. Specifically, these sectors reached 83.2% and 76.9%, respectively.
The Drop During the Pandemic
Consider new inventory growth to put the decline in senior living construction during the pandemic in context. The third quarter of 2021 only saw 3.2% industry growth. By contrast, 2018 saw that same figure peak at 5.0%.
Growth in Lending Accompanies the Upward Trend
Given the rebound in assisted living construction, it is logical that there is also an upward trend in construction lending. The inventory growth is still relatively slow, but it is rebounding.
Construction firms have found good partners in banks as well as equity groups. Most of these lenders want to resolve the issues instead of repossessing a property that may not be valuable or useful to them. This is a challenge that high-level construction jobs are working on along with lenders.
Despite still facing challenges from previous construction loans, lenders are also looking ahead. They are reentering the marketplace and offering loans now that COVID concerns have been reduced. Specifically, the NIC Lending Trends Report found that financial institutions lent over $118,000 million for constructing skilled nursing. They lent an additional $400,000 million for the construction of senior housing. This was in the second quarter of 2021 alone.
Even so, lenders are being cautious. They are only offering new construction loans to borrowers they have previously worked with. They also require strong procedures and operations in place. Even with that caution, the lending for senior housing construction has increased at the quickest pace since 2017.
Prices Are Rising
With the rise in demand for senior living construction combined with supply chain issues and labor shortages, the prices for these projects are rising.
An Excellent Time to Find Construction Jobs
The uptick in senior home construction is not only good for construction firms. It is also good news for those searching for jobs in the industry. It means that demand is high. Combined with the labor shortage, those with experience can easily find competitive salaries.
Like many construction sectors, senior living construction declined during the pandemic. However, the sector is now rebounding. Lenders are also offering their services for these projects, at least to a select group of construction firms they have previously worked with.
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