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Financializing nursing homes? The uneven development of health care REITs in France, the United Kingdom and Japan

Financiariser les maisons de retraite médicalisées ? Le développement inégal des foncières cotées de santé en France, au Royaume Uni et au Japon

Natacha Aveline-Dubach ()
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Natacha Aveline-Dubach: GC (UMR_8504) - Géographie-cités - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - UPCité - Université Paris Cité

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Abstract: Population aging has led to the establishment of Healthcare REITs (HC-REITs) to boost the supply of nursing homes, but these initiatives have met with contrasting success in different countries. This paper bridges two strands of research on financialization, social welfare and the built environment, to explain the uneven geography of HC-REIT development in France, the U.K. and Japan. It argues that nation-specific processes of nursing home securitization are shaped by the interrelationships between three crucial factors: (i) the regime of retirement income, (ii) public policies dedicated to long-term institutional care, and (iii) the power relations between the REITs and care providers themselves. Drawing on discussions with experts in these sectors, the paper demonstrates that liberal welfare states such as the U.K. have an especially attractive profile for HC-REIT investors due to the advanced state of financialized pension reforms, significant state disengagement in the provision of long-term care, and REITfriendly regulations that facilitate investment operations and leases. On the one hand, these tendencies are driving financial investors to satisfy a growing demand for retirement savings in niche markets such as HC-REITs. On the other hand, value extraction is being increasingly sought through the capture of care-dependent residents' home equity. By linking social benefit provisioning to later-life housing accommodation, this article casts important light on current debates on the political economy of real estate financialization, while also emphasizing the need for continued state support for long-term institutional care.

Keywords: Long-term care; Asset-based welfare; Financialization; Real estate; REIT; Nursing homes; nursing homes; long-term care; asset-based welfare; financialization; real estate; EHPAD; Maisons de retraite; Immobilier; Financiarisation; Soins longue durée; Protection sociale basée sur les actifs; CRIA; ACL (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-age
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Published in Environment and Planning A, inPress, 54 (5), pp.984-1004. ⟨10.1177/0308518X211072865⟩

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DOI: 10.1177/0308518X211072865

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