Montana Senior Guide

The Montana Senior Guide contains key statistics and information about how senior citizens in Montana live. Use this tool to compare healthcare quality, senior housing options, demographic and financial statistics, and other important data for Montana with the rest of the country. This guide also contains helpful contact information for local government agencies that offer assistance to senior citizens.

Key Senior Statistics

Use these key statistics to learn more about Montana seniors.

  • 15% of the population of Montana are seniors Source: Census.gov
  • 30% of those seniors living in Montana are living alone Source: Census.gov
  • 7% of Montana senior households have an annual income of less than $10k and 26% less than $20k Source: Census.gov ACS
  • 21% of Montana residents 60 and over received food stamps in the last year Source: Census.gov ACS
  • The average Social Security Income in Montana is $16,653/year Source: Census.gov ACS
  • The median household income for a Montana senior is $34,580 Source: Census.gov ACS
  • Compared to other states, Montana ranks 33rd for Long Term Care and 34th for America's Health Rankings Source: AmericasHealthRankings.org
  • There are 27,098 working seniors in Montana Source: Census.gov ACS
  • 27% of the seniors in Montana are veterans Source: Census.gov ACS

Population by Age

children (20%) working aged (65%) seniors (15%)

(as of 2010)

In the U.S., around 10,000 baby boomers are turning 65 today and everyday for over the next 15 years.

Learn more about the aging population explosion.
The number of people aged 65 and over in Montana is projected to rise 55% over the next 15 years, from 173,778 to 269,558. U.S. Census Population Projections

Montana 65+ Population by County

Montana 65+ Population by County

The 65+ population in Montana as a percent of total state population is below:

Over 652015202020252030
Population 173,778 211,783 247,769 269,558
Percent 17.4% 20.7% 23.9% 25.8%
National Percent 14.5% 16.3% 18.2% 19.7%

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The number of Montana residents 85 and over will increase 52%, from 24,674 to 37,394. U.S. Census Population Projections

Montana 85+ Population by County

Montana 85+ Population by County

The 85+ population in Montana as a percent of total state population is below:

Over 852015202020252030
Population 24,674 26,732 30,368 37,394
Percent 2.5% 2.6% 2.9% 3.6%
National Percent 2.1% 2.2% 2.3% 2.6%

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Senior Housing

Use our senior housing data to get a snapshot of the housing characteristics and living arrangements of the aging population in Montana.

Who do Seniors Live with?

There are 43,950 seniors living alone in Montana. Of these, 66% are female. Source: Census.gov

Seniors Living Alone

Percent Living Alone

Gender of Seniors Living Alone

72% of males 65 and older are married compared with 47% of females.
38% of females are widowed compared with 11% of males. Source: Census.gov

Marital Status

Males

Females

Senior Households: Homeowners vs. Renters

Year Home was Built

Renters

Homeowners

Year Current Resident Moved In

Renters

Homeowners

Percentage with Telephone Service

Overall, 2% of Montana senior households do not have access to phone service.

Renters

Homeowners

Access to a Vehicle

Overall, 8% of Montana senior households do not have access to a vehicle.

Renters

Homeowners

Units in Rental Building

20% of senior renters reside in a large development - one that has 50 or more units.

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Long Term Care Choices

Just 37% of people think they will need long term care, but 69% of people actually will.

Click here for a senior care reality check.

Average Monthly Cost of Long Term Care Services in Montana

Care TypeMontana Average CostNational Average Cost
Home Health Care
8 hours per week
$797$693
Adult Day Care
Weekdays only
$2,064$1,492
Assisted Living$3,560$3,600
Homemaker Services
44 hours per week
$4,385$3,721
Home Health Care
44 hours per week
$4,385$3,813
Nursing Home
Semi-Private - double occupancy room for one person
$6,388$6,692
Nursing Home
Private - single occupancy room for one person
$6,692$7,604
Data from Genworth Long Term Care Costs & Cost of Care in 2015
Genworth Long Term Care Costs & Cost of Care

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Senior Healthcare Quality

Compare the quality of healthcare in Montana with the rest of the country by looking at these state-level quality rankings.

Montana Long Term Care Scorecard Rankings

The 50 states plus Washington, D.C. are ranked on a scale of 1 to 51, where 1 is the highest quality, 51 the lowest.

Ranking DimensionMontana 2011 RankMontana 2014 Rank
Affordability & Access Rank

Consumers can easily find and afford the services they need and there is a safety net for those who cannot afford services.

#36#41
Choice of Setting & Provider

A person-centered approach to LTSS places high value on allowing consumers to exercise choice and control over where they receive services and who providers them.

#21#18
Quality of Life & Quality of Care Rank

Services maximize positive outcomes and consumers are treated with respect. Personal preferences are honored when possible.

#10#11
Support for Family Caregivers

Family caregivers' needs are assessed and addressed so that they can continue in their caregiving role without being overburdened.

#47#49
Effective Transitions Rank

LTSS are arranged to integrate effectively with health care and social services, minimizing disruptions such as hospitalizations, institutionalizations, and transitions between settings.

#N/A#10
Overall Rank

Rank considering all available data.

#33#33

Data from LongTermScorecard.org - A State Scorecard on Long-Term Services and Supports for Older Adults, People with Physical Disabilities, and Family Caregivers created by:

AARP, Inc.
The Commonwealth Fund
The SCAN Foundation

America's Health Rankings® for Montana

The states are ranked on a scale of 1 to 50, where 1 is the highest ranking, 50 the lowest.

Determinant Montana 2013 Rank Montana 2015 Rank
Overall #35 #34
All Determinants #36 #39
Behaviors #34 #24
Smoking

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who smoke at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime and who currently smoke every day or some days

#43 #34
Chronic Drinking

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who consumed more than 60 drinks in the last 30 days for men and more than 30 drinks in the last 30 days for women

#33 #42
Obesity

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older estimated to be obese with a body mass index (BMI) of 30.0 or higher

#7 #6
Underweight

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older with fair or better health status estimated to be underweight with a body mass index (BMI) of 18.5 or less

#39 #18
Physical Inactivity

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older with fair or better health status who report doing no physical activity or exercise (such as running, calisthenics, golf, gardening or walking) other than their regular job in the last 30 days

#22 #15
Dental Visit

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report having visited a dental health professional within the last 12 months

#40 #34
Pain Management

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older with arthritis who report arthritis or joint pain does not limit their usual activities

#8 #19
Education

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older with a college degree

#20 #15
Community #17 #17
Community & Environment - Macro #11 #28
Poverty

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who live in households at or below 100% of the poverty threshold

#20 #27
Volunteerism

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report volunteering in the past 12 months

#10 #11
Nursing Home Quality

Percentage of certified nursing home beds rated 4- or 5-stars

#23 #44
Community & Environment - Micro #27 #7
Food Insecurity

Percentage of adults aged 60 and older who are marginally food insecure

#24 #11
Community Support

Total expenditures captured by the Administration on Aging divided by the number of adults aged 65 and older living in poverty

#11 #12
Policy #48 #48
Low-Care Nursing Home Residents

Percentage of nursing home residents who were low-care, according to the broad definition (no physical assistance required for late-loss activities of daily living)

#39 #39
Prescription Drug Coverage

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who have a creditable prescription drug plan

#44 #44
Geriatrician Shortfall

Estimated geriatrician shortfall as a percentage of the minimum required number

#49 #49
Clinical Care #38 #38
Dedicated Health Care Provider

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report having a personal doctor or health care provider

#47 #48
Flu Vaccine

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who received the flu vaccine in the last year

#44 #30
Health Screenings

Percentage of adults aged 65 to 74 who have had mammograms and/or fecal occult/colonoscopy/sigmoidoscopy screens within the recommended time period

#41 #48
Recommended Hospital Care

Percentage of hospitalized patients aged 65 and older who received the recommended care for heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, and surgical procedures

#11 #5
Diabetes Management

Percentage of Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 to 75 with diabetes receiving a blood lipids test

#47 #47
Home Health Care

Number of personal care and home health aides per 1,000 adults aged 75 or older

#16 #33
Preventable Hospitalizations

Number of discharges for ambulatory care-sensitive conditions per 1,000 Medicare beneficiaries

#15 #11
Hospital Readmissions

Percentage of patients aged 65 or older who were readmitted within 30 days of discharge

#7 #5
Hospice Care

Percentage of decedents aged 65 and older who were enrolled in hospice during the last 6 months of life after diagnosis of condition with high probability of death

#39 #39
Hospital Deaths

Percentage of decedents aged 65 and older who died in a hospital

#4 #10
All Outcomes #31 #25
ICU Use

Percentage of decedents aged 65 and older spending 7 or more days in the intensive care unit (ICU) or critical care unit (CCU) during the last 6 months of life

#11 #12
Falls

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report having had a fall within the last 12 months

#49 #49
Hip Fracture

Rate of hospitalization for hip fracture per 1,000 Medicare beneficiaries

#29 #26
Health Status

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report their health is very good or excellent

#21 #20
Able-bodied

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older with no disability

#27 #30
Premature Death

Number of deaths per 100,000 adults aged 65 to 74 years

#24 #16
Teeth Extractions

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who have had all teeth removed due to tooth decay or gum disease

#29 #32
Poor Mental Health Days

Number of days in the previous 30 that adults aged 65 and older indicate that their mental health was not good

#32 #13
Multiple Chronic Conditions

Percentage of Medicare beneficiaries with 4 or more chronic conditions

#3 #3
Cognition

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who report having a cognitive difficulty

#8 #7
Depression

Percentage of adults aged 65 and older who were told by a health professional that they have a depressive disorder

#40 #27

America's Health Rankings® is the longest-running annual assessment of the nation's health on a state-by-state basis. For the past 25 years, America's Health Rankings® has provided a holistic view of the health of the nation. America's Health Rankings® is the result of a partnership between United Health Foundation, American Public Health Association, and Partnership for Prevention™.

Americas Health Rankings - United Health Foundation
United Health Foundation
ALPHA - American Public Health Association

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Senior Financial Overview

View our Montana financial data below to learn about the income, wealth and costs incurred of those seniors living in the community.

The median household income for seniors in Montana is $34,580 Source: Census.gov ACS

Annual Income for Senior Households

43% of senior households in Montana earn less than $30,000 per year, while 9% earn more than $100K/year


Only those where the head of household is 65 or over are included. As an example, an elderly widow and her children's income would be counted if her children choose to live with her. However, if she chooses to live with her children, neither would be counted.

Also, keep in mind the distinction between household and individual income. A married couple over the age of 65 that is still working and earning $30,000 per year each would have a household income of $60,000.

The average Social Security income per household receiving the benefit in Montana is $16,653 Source: Census.gov ACS
The average retirement income per household receiving it in Montana is $20,903 Source: Census.gov ACS
18% of seniors in Montana are employed. Source: Census.gov ACS

Employment Status

Males

Females

How Seniors Travel to/from Work

29% of Montana seniors have a college degree. Source: Census.gov ACS

Highest Level of Education

Males

Females

96% of seniors living in Montana speak English at home. Source: Census.gov ACS
8% of the seniors in Montana are below the poverty level. Source: Census.gov ACS

Percentage of Seniors Below the Poverty Level

Male

Female

Percent of People 60 and Over Receiving Food Stamps

27% of senior homeowners in Montana have a mortgage. Source: Census.gov ACS

Home Ownership Cost as a Percent of Income

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Helpful Contacts for Seniors

State Agency on Aging

Overview of Contacts

Aging and Disability Resource Centers

Overview of Contacts

Area Agencies on Aging

Overview of Contacts

Health Insurance Counseling

Overview of Contacts

Information and Assistance

Overview of Contacts

Overview of Contacts

Long-term Care Ombudsman

Overview of Contacts

Elder Abuse Prevention

Overview of Contacts

American Indian Tribes and Tribal Organizations

Overview of Contacts

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Sources

Census.gov - Data from the 2010 United States Census. The Census counts every resident in the U.S. and is conducted once every 10 years.

Census.gov ACS - Data from the the 2009-2013 American Community Survey (ACS). The ACS is conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau every year. Because every resident is not surveyed each year, data from a 5 year period is used to improve accuracy.