Care Homes For Older People UK Market Report


LaingBuisson’s long-established study into the UK’s independent care homes for older people market. Twenty-ninth edition. Published 24 July 2018. (445pp) NB Digital Files Only


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“At the premium end of the market, the top decile of care homes for older people charge in excess of £1,200 per week (nursing care) and over about £900 or more per week (residential care). It is believed that the premium market is under-supplied in many affluent areas, and that there remains an unfulfilled demand for more high quality homes aimed primarily at a self-pay clientele and run to the sort of standards that an increasingly discriminating public has come to expect in other sectors of the economy. The relative buoyancy of the private pay market in general, and in particular the market for homes charging premium fee rates in affluent areas, is reflected in the focus of most current care home development on the self-pay market. The private care home market also overlaps with the privately paid extra care market, with several operators’ offerings spanning both.

William Laing
– Report author


New data indicates there may not be a care home supply crisis

The UK market for Care Homes for Older People is estimated to be worth £16.9 billion in the year to March 2018, which represents nominal growth of approximately 3% with respect to the previous year.

New information has come to light that has led to a reappraisal of whether there is likely to be a care home supply crisis. LaingBuisson has collated and analysed data taken from CQC reports on individual care homes which shows that overall occupancy of care homes is lower than previously thought. It shows that the aggregate numbers of residents as a percentage of registered beds is 85%, whereas the widely accepted occupancy benchmark has been around 90%. The research also points to there being a good deal of ‘latent provision’ in care homes, which suggests commissioners should look at ways of bringing this provision back into use.

The report also identifies a reversal in the recent trend of net closures during the yearly cycle. It, furthermore, reappraises predictions for care home demand based on a model originally developed by the Brookings Institute in the USA.

The balance between state-pay and self-pay clients continues to be a key determiner in the market. In the state-pay sector, there continues to be significant pressure on providers’ prices and margins and this is bringing into question the sustainability of this model. There remains strong evidence of a ‘self-pay’ subsidy, with ‘pure’ self-payers accounting for 52% of the market by value but only 45% by volume, making the market much more stable in areas of the country where there is a greater reliance on self-pay.


What the report includes

  • Care Homes for Older People – residential and nursing care
  • Market Overview
  • Definition and Scope
  • Segmentation
  • Funding
  • Demand Drivers
  • Supply and Demand
  • Staffing
  • Key Operational Metrics
  • Operating and Investment Models
  • Politic and Regulation
  • Payors
  • Client Profiles and Trends
  • Major Providers
  • Market Concentration
  • Investors
  • Market Potential
  • Appendices
    Trade Associations
    CMA Conclusions
    Financial Appendix


Who is the report for

  • Operators of residential care and nursing homes
  • Homecare agencies and providers
  • Nursing agency operators
  • Local authority commissioners
  • CCG commissioners
  • Directors of adult social services
  • Care advisors
  • Banks and investors
  • Management consultants
  • Business advisors
  • Long-term care insurance providers
  • Central government
  • Think tanks
  • Policy writers


What You Get

      • Digital package – Multi-user Digital PDF and Data in Excel


LaingBuisson is the chosen provider of independent sector healthcare market data to the UK government’s Office for National Statistics.

Additional information

Report Format

Multi-user Digital PDF + Printed Hard Copy, Single-user Printed Hard Copy