Case Study: Life Care Services

Business Opportunity: Life Care Services Ensures Long-term Stability and Delivery of Exceptional Service

The Marshes of Skidaway Island

Community at a Glance

Project Scope

Senior Living Management Services


Life Plan Community

Unit Mix

Independent living: 182
Apartment villas: 128
Cottages and townhomes: 54
Assisted living suites: 21
Licensed skilled nursing beds: 23


  • Community opened three years before the Great Recession of 2008.
  • Recession devastated the housing market and tightened seniors’ budgets.
  • Occupancy rates dropped to 90%.
  • Community had a little more than a month cash on hand.
  • Incentives were necessary to attract new residents.

Positive Outcomes

  • Partnership with Life Care Services enabled the community to pivot to weather the Great Recession.
  • Strategic decisions to refinance led to significant financial growth.
  • Community had more than 800 days of cash on hand as of August 2023.
  • Started a waitlist in 2013. Residences were 100% sold in 2016.
  • Waitlist exceeded 280 future residents as of August 2023. Incentives for prospective residents have not been offered since 2013.
  • 97% overall resident satisfaction rate as of August 2023.


Business Profile

The Marshes of Skidaway Island is a retirement oasis just minutes from the charming city of Savannah, Georgia. The community was founded in 2004 as the brainchild of residents of The Landing, an affluent neighborhood on Skidaway Island. Wanting to continue their active and idyllic island lifestyle, residents influenced the development of a 58-acre life plan community. The community includes two restaurants offering residents a culinary variety through casual and formal dining. A host of amenities, such as bocce ball and weekly housekeeping and maintenance, offer the promise of a life well lived. The community also offers a continuum of on-site health care including assisted living and skilled nursing, allowing residents to receive the care they need within the community they know and love.

Business Situation

Across the country, the Great Recession of 2008 had an outsized impact on senior housing developments, as tumbling home prices forced many Americans to delay plans to sell their homes. One survey by the AARP found nearly a third of people 65 years of age and older postponed their retirement.

The recession resulted in occupancy rates at The Marshes of Skidway Island falling to 90%, and the cash reserves tapped out at enough for about 30 days of business. Life Care Services had been a crucial part of The Marshes of Skidaway Island’s team since the community’s inception and their clear vision and excellent working relationship with the staff and 12-member board of directors enabled the community to adapt to challenges experienced during the Great Recession of 2008.

Life Care Services led several financial projects in conjunction with the community, including refinancing in both 2013 and 2020. Refinancing was instrumental for The Marshes of Skidaway Island’s financial turnaround, taking the cash on hand from 30 days to more than 800 days. This turnaround also mirrored achievements in occupancy. Beginning in 2016, 100% of the community’s units sold. The waitlist for prospective residents has now exceeded 280 spots as of August 2023.

In 2020, the board signed a seven-year contract with Life Care Services to continue managing the community. The extension reflected the trust in Life Care Services as a partner and ensured the long-term stability and standard of service residents have come to expect.

Delivering Exceptional Experiences

The depth and breadth of resources provided by  Life Care Services empower communities to prioritize their residents and worry less about the day-to-day operations. The result is a delivery of exceptional service and increased resident satisfaction. Residents report a satisfaction rate as high as 97%.

Residents report a satisfaction rate as high as 97%.

At The Marshes of Skidaway Island, the board’s confidence in Life Care Services has led to multiple strategic planning sessions to remain competitive in the market. Life Care Services takes care of monitoring state regulations for compliance and conducts mock surveys to help minimize citations. Those efforts have led to a compliance record at The Marshes of Skidaway Island far above the state and national averages. In September of 2023, the community achieved a deficiency-free health center survey, and it was also deficiency free on its most recent assisted living survey, both of which reflect the support of the Health Services Division.  This designation means that The Marshes of Skidaway Island operates in total compliance with state and federal regulations in the key areas of resident care, services and staffing regulations.

Life Care Services provides the community’s staff with access to professional development opportunities.  The community also benefits from having a network of Life Care Services communities that can provide guidance. And because each community is unique,  the services provided by Life Care Services are personalized to fit the community’s needs. 

Resources, expertise and day-to-day oversight from Life Care Services frees community leadership to focus on residents. At Life Care Services, it’s true  that Experience Is Everything®. For the residents of The Marshes of Skidaway Island, their excellent experience is made possible through the strong partnership between the community and  Life Care Services.

  • Exterior-The Marshes of Skidaway Island
  • Exterior-The Marshes of Skidaway Island

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