As your loved one reaches their golden years living alone at home may not be an option. Maybe they’d enjoy a senior residential community primarily for the social aspect. Everyone has different needs and you also need to keep the future in mind. So, it pays to take the time to do extensive research while involving your loved one as much as possible. After all, they’ll be most affected by the decision, good or bad. Ultimately, your loved one needs to be happy, properly cared for and to feel as much personal autonomy as possible. While searching, keep in mind:
Level of Care
One of the most important decisions is the level of care required. An active senior will enjoy an independent living community. If they need a little more care but are mostly independent, an assisted living center may be right. Some communities also handle memory care, which is a good choice for seniors with memory issues including Alzheimer’s or dementia. Continuing-care retirement communities (CCRC) offer different levels of care on the same premises. This allows residents the opportunity to live there for the rest of their life, whether they remain in good health or not.
You won’t get a genuine feel for the atmosphere of the particular community until you visit in person. Spend a day meeting residents and staff, viewing the living quarters and eating a meal there. If your loved one has particular interests (e.g., painting, Zumba or playing a musical instrument) check to see if the community offers activities, programs or classes that specialize in that area. Your loved one will appreciate a quick way of making new friends with similar interests. Whether you’re looking for independent living in Denver or a CCRC in Baton Rouge, the mood of the community can make all the difference.
Just as different senior communities offer a range of amenities, prices can also vary greatly. The cost will probably be the main factor in determining whether a certain place can be a possibility or not; make sure that you only consider places your loved one can reasonably afford. There are several ways to pay for senior living, including long-term care insurance, veterans benefits and social security. Selling or leveraging assets can also help.
Once you discover a few matches that seem to meet most of your expectations, the decision may just come down to one or two perks that your loved one chooses over the others. Take time to make sure that they’re going to live out their days in the place that’s best suited for them, where you can be confident that they’ll be well taken care of and happy.