Consumers “Surprised” by Ambiance, Move in More Quickly

SAN MATEO, CA; April 23, 2015 — Consumers who tour senior living communities are surprised by how nice they are, gain valuable insights that they couldn’t find otherwise, and move in three times more quickly than people who don’t tour, according to new research from

The survey of 1,181 people who took senior living community tours was conducted March 7-26, 2015. Over half of respondents had toured one or more communities during their search for senior care, with one-third visiting four or more senior living communities. Despite seeing flattering pictures and descriptions posted online, 68% of people who toured a senior living community reported being “surprised at how nice it was.”

Large majorities of those who toured had a favorable impression of the staff (91%), and 10% specifically mentioned “staff interaction with residents” as an important reason to tour and not just research online. Other important considerations in taking a tour were “getting the feel” of the community, which was also frequently called out in open-ended comments, and many people said they could not picture the size of the rooms based on square-footage descriptions.

“Families who schedule a tour through our senior housing help line move in at 3.5 times the rate of others we speak with, and also 25% faster than those who decline to tour right away,” said CEO Andy Cohen. “These statistics underscore the value of the tour experience for consumers in selecting the best-fit senior living community for themselves and/or their loved ones.”

While most visitors had a positive experience during their tours, noticeable minorities said they had not been contacted prior to a scheduled tour to confirm it (12%), and almost one in five people (18%) reported no contact at all from the community post-tour. A further 26% had been contacted only once post-tour. In addition, 20% of people said the tour was too much of a sales pitch.

Over half of survey respondents took the time to provide open-ended comments, and the single most common category of negative write-in comments was dissatisfaction with the way the community handled pricing discussions (13%). Virtually all who commented wanted more pricing information before they came in.

More information about tours is available for senior housing operators here: For those interested in getting listed on, please call (866) 824-9209.