For the second year in a row, the average price paid per bed for skilled nursing facilities hit a new record in 2007. The average of $55,200 was 6% higher compared with the year before and 75% more than the notable low of 2003, according to analysis results from research firm Irving Levin Associates.

As more investment groups became enamored with long-term care properties in recent years, valuations and loan volume in the sector soared to record highs. The median SNF bed price leaped 15% in 2007, for example, buoyed by billion-dollar deals involving major nursing home chains going private.

“Capital was still plentiful through most of 2007, but it is unclear what the impact of last summer’s credit market problems will have on acquisition values in 2008,” said Stephen M. Monroe, editor of The Senior Care Acquisition Report, Thirteenth Edition. Irving Levin Associates publishes the report.

The average sales price for assisted living units also hit a new high $159,100 in 2007, 20% higher than the year before. Independent living unit prices also rose 20% in 2007, to $174,500 per unit, another record, according to the report.