Which Senior Living Community is Right For Me?
It doesn’t matter how young or old you are, deciding where you want to live is a big deal! There are so many different senior living communities it’s hard to know where to start when choosing the one for you. When you are considering different retirement communities, predetermine your personal preferences so you know what you want before you start looking.
Where Do I Want to Live?
Many older adults plan to stay in their current neighborhood, while others are more willing to move. When making your decision, consider how close in proximity you would like to be to:
- Health care providers
- Shopping centers
What Type of Senior Living Community Am I Interested In?
Senior living communities come in various shapes and sizes. Some offer single levels of care and services, such as Assisted Living, while Life Plan Communities (also known as Continuing Care Retirement Communities or CCRCs) offer a complete continuum of care on campus.
What About My Future Care Needs?
If a community does not offer higher levels of care, you will have to move to another facility when your health care needs are larger or more intensive. That’s why continuing care retirement communities like Luther Manor have become more popular over the years. This is especially important for couples who could be separated if one spouse needs more care than the other.
Ask Yourself These Questions About Your Care Needs
- Which community offers the best care for my situation?
- If I get too sick to take care of myself, where would I like to go?
- What happens when I need a higher level of care? Will I have to move again?
- Will my spouse and I have to live in separate communities when one of us needs a different level of care than the other?
Do They Provide High-Quality Care?
When you do need higher levels of care such as assisted living or skilled nursing, you want it to be top-notch.
Here’s How to Know If There Is Quality Care
- Each facility is reviewed by the State — the results of the survey are publically available online.
- When touring, inquire about staff-to-resident ratios, response time to residents, the longevity of staff, and whether or not there is a registered nurse on site.
- Check out testimonials and online reviews of the community.
- Talk to current residents.
How Much Does It Cost?
While each senior living community will have a monthly fee, what’s included in that fee may vary. Some charge for utilities and services like laundry and housekeeping, while others are all-inclusive. Many communities require you to pay an entrance fee. Do your research and find out what is included and if there are extra costs.
What to Ask When Considering the Affordability of a Senior Living Community
- Is there an entrance fee? Is it refundable?
- What’s included in my monthly rent?
- How often does rent increase and by what percent?
- Are there any hidden fees?
- Are financial support options available?
How Will I Stay Active and Social?
Being active and engaged is usually easy in retirement communities! Most will happily accommodate you so you can practice your favorite hobbies or even start a social club. Consider the types of activities you prefer, whether they may be book clubs, arts and crafts, frequent exercise classes, or others, and compare them to the community’s calendar of activities.
Questions to Ask When Evaluating a Senior Living Community’s Activities
- Do they have scheduled activities? How often and what kind?
- Can they cater to your favorite hobbies?
- What holidays are observed by the residents?
What Are the Key Features?
Senior living communities often have onsite gyms and swimming pools. Other common amenities include onsite beauty and barber shops, restaurants, large rooms available for entertaining, and more. Which amenities would you like?
How Do You Plan to Get Around?
Don’t forget about transportation. Prospective senior living residents who can drive will want to know if parking is available. For those unable to drive, most communities offer medical van transportation to and from doctor’s appointments, while others also have regularly scheduled shopping buses and group transportation to off-site entertainment.
What to Ask Regarding Senior Transportation Options
- Can I have my car?
- Is there outside or inside parking available? Is there a fee for parking?
- Is there a medical van for transport to doctor’s appointments? Is this included with my rent or an additional fee?
- Is there a regularly-scheduled shopping bus for groceries and other necessities?
What Type of Community Are They?
There’s a big difference in the ways for-profit and not-for-profit retirement communities operate. For-profit senior living organizations answer to a private owner to public shareholders, while not-for-profit retirement communities can provide charity care. Some communities have a partnering foundation to support residents-in-need.
What to Ask Regarding a Community’s Operations
- What is their mission?
- How long have they been in business?
- How many locations do they have?
- Are they resident-centered?
- What happens if I run out of money/assets?
- Do they have a charitable foundation in place to help financially exhausted residents?
What Else Should I Consider?
Do They Allow Pets?
If you’re planning to bring Fluffy when you move, confirm that the community allows animals.
Can They Accommodate Special Diets?
Not all communities can protect those with severe food allergies.
Do I Prefer a Faith-Based Atmosphere?
Faith-based senior living communities provide pastoral care, including on-site worship services, chapels, Bible studies, and chaplains on staff. There is an emphasis on spiritual life and involvement.
We’re Here to Help!
Now that you know what to look for in a 55+ community, put your list of preferences to the test and contact us today to experience everything Luther Manor has to offer.