Have you ever bought a piece of clothing that was one-size-fits-all? How did that work out for you? Just as a sweatshirt isn’t going to be a perfect fit for every body, senior living options must come in different shapes and sizes to meet the needs of their residents. The journey can be overwhelming, especially when you’re also dealing with health concerns or other issues of aging. Senior Living Advisor is here to walk this journey with you and find the senior living solution that fits you and your lifestyle.
What differentiates one senior living community from another? We look at a few factors below that you will want to consider to ensure you find the right fit for you.
Level of Care
Senior living communities are thriving, vibrant areas where seniors can live safely and as independently as possible. Residents have access to different levels of are, depending on where they live and what the community offers:
Independent Living communities are specifically set up for seniors to offer safe homes
with minimal assistance. Residents may have access to hospitality services like housekeeping, meals, or laundry as needed. Residents do not need regular medical care, but they may have call buttons in the event of a fall or other emergency.
Assisted Living provides help with activities of daily living, like bathing, dressing, medication management, or toileting. Most assisted living facilities offer different levels at different price points, depending on the resident’s current needs.
Long-term Care facilities are for seniors who need the highest level of medical care. They may be bedridden or require daily nursing care.
Memory Care facilities focus on residents with Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia. These facilities typically have a higher caregiver-to-patient ratio and feature security measures to keep residents safe.
Senior Living comes at various price points, depending on where you live and what level of care you need. According to Caring.Com, assisted living in Hamilton County currently averages $3519 monthly. Medicare typically does not pay for assisted living, although it may cover a short stay in a skilled nursing facility for rehabilitation services.
Look at your budget and consider what you’re already spending on your mortgage, utilities, internet access, groceries and more. Are you a veteran? You may be eligible for a monthly supplement to pay for senior living. It can be hard to let go of the family home but selling while the market is hot ensures you get the maximum amount of cash for that asset.
Some facilities have a set number of spaces set aside for Medicaid recipients. Most people are not eligible for Medicaid until they have exhausted all their financial assets.If you envision needing Medicaid at some point, you may want to ensure you’re in a community that accepts Medicaid. Otherwise, you may have to move again in the future.
Senior living communities offer various services on-site to help residents with daily tasks and errands they used to take for granted. What services will you need? Will you need transportation for a doctor’s visit, for instance? Do you plan to shop for your own groceries and cook your own meals? Can you combine those home cooked meals with a meal plan offered by the community?
The level of medical care at different communities will vary as well. Some communities have a full staff of medical professionals who can monitor your health and assist you if you are not feeling well. Do you want to continue being treated by your primary care physician, who may only be able to see you in his or her office, or would you feel comfortable switching to the facility’s doctor who makes regular house calls?
Senior living communities are breaking the mold when it comes to what people are doing in their Golden Years. They may offer regular classes or lectures. Who knew you’d be able to take dance lessons at your new senior living home? Many communities host regular concerts or visiting choirs from local high schools. Some residents say it’s like being back on a college campus again!
Religious services may be an important part of your life, and a community that offers them on-site can be a good fit for someone who has spent their life engaged in a particular faith. Travel options may even exist for residents who have some exploring to do.
It’s up to each potential resident to decide how important activities will be when they move in. Some senior living residents take advantage of every club and event on the schedule, while others prefer to spend quiet time in their homes. There is no right or wrong answer, just the right answer for the right person.
What are the rules?
Each community has its own set of policies governing what residents can do. Some communities allow pets, which can be very important to owners. Some restrict visiting hours, which may not work for your loved ones who want to visit. Can residents bring guests to the dining room? Are overnight guests allowed? Can residents keep their cars on the premises? Find out the rules before you sign on the dotted line, so there are no surprises.
Finding the right fit
If this all seems overwhelming, don’t despair. The staff at Senior Living Advisor is already familiar with local senior living options and what they offer. We sit down with clients to become familiar with their needs before suggesting communities that could be a good fit. Nothing can compare to an in-person visit, where potential residents and their loved ones can tour the facilities, taste the food and get a feel for the residents and staff. Senior Living Advisor will walk beside you on this journey, arranging visits and accompanying clients to up to three communities for a tour and dining as appropriate.
Nothing is more important than your peace of mind and comfort as you choose your next home. Senior housing and care choices don’t have to be frightening, and they don’t have to be the same for every person. Let Senior Living Advisor help you make the right decisions for the best possible fit. Contact us now. You won’t be alone.