Category Archives: Housing

Heard about “ALPHA”? | This York County initiative is tackling the issue of helping people by bolstering interest in personal care homes

ALPHA

Click on the above graphic to download the entire fact sheet.

“In southcentral Pa, low-income residents are at risk as personal care homes rapidly close” The Hanover Evening Sun

York County’s ALPHA Project facebook page.

“Personal Care Homes (PCHs) are residences that provide shelter, meals, supervision and assistance with personal care tasks, typically for older people, or people with physical, behavioral health, or cognitive disabilities who are unable to care for themselves but do not need nursing home or medical care. While available services vary and are based on the individual needs of each resident, services provided at a typical PCH include assistance with:

  • Eating/drinking
  • Walking/getting in and out of bed or chair
  • Toileting/bowel and bladder management
  • Bathing
  • Personal hygiene
  • Arranging for and managing health care
  • Making/keeping doctor’s appointments
  • Assisting with or administering medications
  • Positioning in bed or chair
  • Doing laundry
  • Arranging for transportation
  • Shopping/managing finances
  • Using the telephone/writing letters
  • Caring for possessions
  • Participating in social/recreational activities
  • Using prosthetics
  • Getting and caring for seasonal clothes

Personal Care Homes are inspected and licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. They are usually privately-owned, although some are operated by local governments or non-profit agencies. In Pennsylvania, homes may be licensed to care for as few as four people and as many as several hundred. -SOURCE: Pennsylvania Department of Human Services

To find information on a Personal Care Home near you see the Personal Care Home Directory.

“The need is great and growing for accessible, affordable housing” | maybe this is one step toward satisfying that need?

malls to residencesShuttered stores dominate the interior of the Schuylkill Mall which has closed and been demolished in Frackville, Pennsylvania.

This article at Pennlive today, “Dead and dying malls of Pennsylvania, updated: More shopping centers are bleeding retailers.” prompted a revisited look at an idea that’s being floated across the nation.

What will become of these once-popular retail centers? Demolish them? Re-store them? Re-purpose them?

“The retail apocalypse has not been kind to malls. Credit Suisse recently studied the state of mall-based retail and predicted that that about one-fourth of the nation’s 1,100 shopping malls — or roughly 220 to 275 shopping centers — will close by 2022.”

The  above is the lead paragraph from this Forbes Magazine article: “Why Malls Should Add Residential To Their Repurposing Plans.”

Te idea that malls offer ideal solutions for affordable, accessible residences is one that has to be considered. Many malls already are on public transportation routes; they already have plenty of parking and they’re “walkable.”

This white paper by New York State Assemblyman Stephen Englebright points out other benefits for older adults and people with disabilities:

  • Mixed-use development that includes housing, shopping, amenities, and
    access to transportation and professional offices provides easy, often
    walkable, access to necessities for daily living and substantially reduces or eliminates use of personal cars—thereby, (1) helping non-driving older people and people with disabilities to remain independent for much longer periods of time, (2) keeping these individuals integrated with others in the community, and (3)  significantly supporting the caregiving efforts of family members.
  • Subsidized housing in place of distressed or vacant strip malls, or developed above prosperous malls, helps address the State’s significant need for additional affordable housing, thereby helping to keep seniors and people with disabilities living in their own communities instead of relocating.
  • Small numbers of affordable units above a box store or strip mall, or incorporated as a component of a mixed-income larger redevelopment of a shopping center furthers the integration of low- and moderate-income families and individuals into the wider community.

Another Forbes Magazine shares the thought: “4 Models Of The Shopping Mall Of The Future.”

In Providence, RI, “You Can Now Live Inside America’s First Shopping Mall for $550 a Month: But there’s already a waiting list for these new micro apartments.”

“Are We Fighting a War on Homelessness? Or a War on the Homeless?” – Column in The New York Times

homelessness

by Ginia Bellafante

“Last fall, a special investigator for the United Nations presented a report to the General Assembly on the global housing crisis, pointing out that a quarter of the world’s urban population now live in ‘informal settlements’ or encampments, increasingly in the most affluent countries. The fact-finding mission took the investigator to cities like Mumbai, Belgrade and Mexico City, where she found rodent infestations, children playing on garbage heaps ‘as if they were trampolines’ and people living in shacks or in damp abandoned buildings full of exposed wires.

“At the invitation of academics and advocates, she also went to to San Francisco, where the median home price is $1.6 million.

“There she witnessed equally deplorable conditions. Crucial to the report’s assessment was the finding that the city’s resistance to providing help and basic necessities in the encampments there qualified as ‘cruel and inhuman treatment,’ which was in line with violations of international standards of human rights.”

Read this column at The New York Times in its entirety, click here.

“Middle-income seniors risk falling through cracks in housing market”

HOUSING-SENIORS-1559059032Katherine Frey/Washington Post

by TARA BAHRAMPOUR, The Washington Post

“Mary Gerace has lived here since 1963 and loves it. But at 73, she worries that someday she may become too frail to stay in the rent-controlled third-floor walk-up apartment where she has lived for 42 years. Then, she fears, she won’t be able to afford to remain in the city.

“‘I’m fine now, thank goodness, but a surprise fall or a serious illness could change that,’ said Ms. Gerace, who retired three years ago from working in human resources at a small company. The low rent on her apartment, which she shares with her brother, enables her to own a car, eat out sometimes, and take occasional day trips.

“But local senior housing facilities she has looked into cost many times more than what she now pays, and far more than her savings would cover. ‘As I look around the Washington area, I realize that I’m going to have to look outside of here,’ possibly to another region of the U.S., she said.

“In the next decade, the number of seniors who are middle-income is projected to soar, and a large share of them will be unable to afford housing and care, according to a recent study published in the journal Health Affairs.”

Continue reading this article at The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette here.

AN OPINION: “Older adult finances and future senior housing options are out of sync” – Aging In Place Technology Watch

Rant on. A sad tale – reading the lament about the numbers of seniors who will not be able to afford assisted living in 10 years. The report is from NIC – the National Investment Center that provides research to the senior living industry. The upshot – 54% will be unable to pay the $60,000 average annual cost of assisted living (make that $93,000 in Washington DC), even if they sell their home. If one member of a couple is still living in the home, the number rises to 81%.  According to the study, 60% of the population aged 75+ will have mobility, cognitive impairment or chronic conditions that would characterize them as good candidates for assisted living services and settings – but will not have the savings to enable them to move in.

There are some problems with this study’s message to the industry.  First the affordability gap of assisted living and the population that could benefit. This has been a statistical fixture forever (move in age of 85 noted in 2012 and again in 2015). What has changed, if anything, is life expectancy. For those aged 65+, living into the late 80s or even the 90s is increasingly likely.  Looking at life expectancy lasting to mid-to-late 80s combined with average savings for those aged 75+ of $16,025 for a couple with no children, it is no wonder that the steady state penetration of assisted living remains stuck at 10% of the likely population, at least according to the industry. According to NCAL, seniros stay 22 months on average, before moving to skilled nursing. With assisted living occupancy at 85% being attributed to over-building, but one might also posit that price-plus-life expectancy keeps even the willing and interested at home.

Consider the operating margin of 34% and the real cost – can tech help?  This industry has been a real estate investment play from the very beginning. One executive interviewed for the NIC study observed, reluctantly, that margins could be compressed to create more affordable options, perhaps by building on less expensive land. Hopefully not from robbing the pay of CNAs who do the real hands-on labor – their average pay of $11-12/hour nationwide can’t be pushed down much further. Maybe high-end food choices could be trimmed, the lobby furniture more modest, or the long-shot on operational costs, noted in the Health Affairs the study: “Technology is already driving innovation. The implementation of an ever-expanding panoply of high-tech solutions such as artificial intelligence, voice technology, smart phone apps, smart sensors, and telehealth can help improve quality of life, and care, while reducing costs.” Right.

The margin question is about people — how to need fewer or boost pay to recruit. The staff-to-resident ratios may, in some states, already be too thin to handle assisted living memory care residents. For families of a resident, that means supplementing the $60K annual cost with the hidden cost of needed private duty home care aides (same hourly rate). For many, that additional cost may drive families elsewhere, to nursing homes or back home. But the real problem will limit expansion of assisted living is a shortage of available workers — for assisted living, skilled nursing and home care. Where to recruit this low-paid workforce in a high employment time, competing with wage levels of Walmart and McDonald’s? Finally, will we read the same lament in 10 years about the large population of now-aged boomers who cannot afford assisted living? Count on it.  Rant off.

SOURCE: https://www.ageinplacetech.com/blog/older-adult-finances-and-future-senior-housing-options-are-out-sync?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AgingInPlaceTechnologyWatch+%28Aging+In+Place+Technology+Watch%29

“More than half of middle-income seniors will lack resources for housing and care, study says” – The Boston Globe

senior careSenior housing with health care services will be out of reach for more than half of middle-income Americans over 75 years old in the coming decade, according to a new study. (SUZANNE KREITER/GLOBE STAFF/FILE/2012)

by Robert Weisman

For more than half of middle-income Americans over 75 years old, senior housing with health care services will be out of reach in the coming decade, a new study warns.

“The report, published Wednesday in the journal Health Affairs, is the first comprehensive look at a vast and growing demographic group researchers call the ‘forgotten middle’ — people who can’t afford private assisted-living facilities but don’t qualify for subsidized nursing home care unless they spend down the assets they accumulate during their working years.

“As the ranks of retired baby boomers swell and many live longer than their parents, the study projects that by 2029 about 14.4 million middle-income seniors — nearly double today’s number — will lack the financial resources for housing that offers personal care assistance.”

Continue reading this Boston Globe article, click here.


Read the article at Health Affairs here.

April 10 Webinar: Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program: Overview and How to Apply 

webinar-

Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program: Overview and How to Apply 

This webinar will provide a brief overview of the PA Department of Revenue’s Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program, eligibility requirements, and information on how to fill out and submit forms for the program.

Presenters:

Chantel Hardaway, PHR, Chief of Outreach and Education, Customer Experience Center, PA Department of Revenue

Donald Bianchi, CPA Director of the Customer Experience Center, Department of Revenue

 

When: Wednesday, April 10th | 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Register here!

An idea that’s time has come? | “Rethinking What Makes a Great Roommate” – AARP

“Many older adults own homes with rooms to spare and could use some help around the house. Young, helpful renters need safe, affordable places to live. Nesterly is helping them find one another.”

co-housing“PHOTO BY GARY BATTISTON, CITY OF BOSTON – Brenda, an empty nester, and Phoebus, a Ph.D. candidate from Greece, used the Nesterly website to become housemates in her Boston home.”

“Noelle Marcus and Rachel Goor, urban planning graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology turned business partners, wanted to put their skills to use in addressing two housing crises: the paucity of affordable housing and the financial difficulties faced by older people who don’t want to give up their homes.

“The result: Nesterly, a website that connects older people who have rooms to spare with young and lower income people seeking medium-term affordable housing. ‘Homeshare with another generation: The easy, safe way to rent a room,’ states the site’s homepage.

“Launched in 2016, in partnership with the city of Boston, the service stems from the chaos of Hurricane Sandy, which hit the Northeast hard in October 2012. At the time, Marcus noticed that Airbnb was asking its hosts to house people whose homes were in danger from the storm.”

Continue reading this article at AARP, click here.

Technology and home health care: a match?

We’ve been reading so much about advantages that aging persons can accrue with the introduction of emerging technology, we decided to list some of the articles.

Aging In Place Technology Watch shares this in today’s newsletter: “… it’s good to see that Envoy (concierge service for independent living), Kindly Care (home care agency), Caremerge (home care platform), and Seniorlink (care coordination) are in their same businesses from 2016 – and others from the period like Envoy and CareLinx received additional investment and moved forward.

aging technology

“New Tech Options are Helping Seniors Age in Place – Systems that offer reminders and assistance are creating ‘monitored independence.’”Scientific American

“Smart Home Technology Becomes a Must-Have in Senior Living”Senior Housing News

A 2016 article | “Home care robotics market set to quadruple – The robots are finally coming home, but the undisputed category leader isn’t what you had in mind.”ZD Net

“A Glimpse at Healthcare Technology May Give Signs to the Future of Home Care”HomeCareDaily

“Home Instead Inc. — the international franchise company behind the Home Instead Senior Care network — is joining forces with senior-friendly tablet startup GrandPad in an attempt to reduce client loneliness and improve connectivity.”Home Health Care News

“Where the Home Health Aide Shortage Will Hit Hardest by 2025” Home Health Care News

Get Moving With All of AARP’s Roadmaps | a six-part series features workbooks about housing, transportation, health services, community engagement and more.

aarp roadmaps to livabiity