Considering an Independent Living Community? Here's What You Need to Know

Many seniors view staying at home as the ultimate symbol of independence. But what if daily tasks are becoming a burden? Yardwork, house repairs, medication management, even driving - these can all become challenging as we age. An independent living community can enhance your independence by providing support while allowing you to pursue your passions.

What truly defines independence for seniors? Experts say it's about having the support you need to live life on your terms, with the freedom to enjoy your hobbies and interests.

Are you thinking about moving to an independent living community? Here are some key questions to ask:

  • What kind of life do I envision for myself? What are my interests? What are my potential future health concerns?
  • Can this community meet my evolving needs? Does it offer services I need now and might require later, such as memory care? Can it accommodate couples with differing health needs? Ideally, the community can transition residents to higher levels of care if needed, avoiding a future move.
  • What about the cost? Independent living communities offer a variety of housing and care options, including continuing care communities with a wide range of services (often with an entry fee). Other communities offer more affordable options. It's wise to seek financial advice, as independent living can be surprisingly cost-effective when you factor in eliminated homeowner expenses like property taxes, utilities, maintenance, and cleaning. Additionally, long-term care insurance, VA benefits, or other resources may help offset the cost.

Leaving your longtime home can be difficult, but independent living offers many benefits:

  • A vibrant community: New friends, social events, and opportunities to connect.
  • Enhanced independence: Privacy with 24/7 security and assistance with daily tasks as needed.
  • Peace of mind: Knowing that higher levels of care are readily available if needed. (While COVID-19 may have temporarily limited some activities, these are likely to return as vaccinations become more widespread.)

Choosing the right community: Does it fit all of your requirements and then some?

Here are some questions to consider when touring communities:

  • Location: Convenient for you and your loved ones?
  • Services: Does it offer the exact level of care and services you need?
  • Ambiance: Does the environment feel welcoming and comfortable?
  • Pet policies: Are pets allowed? If so, what are the restrictions?
  • Dining: What kind of food is served?
  • Staff interaction: Is there a positive and engaging relationship between staff and residents?
  • Safety and security: What measures are in place?
  • Living space: What are the apartments or units like? How much of your current home can you bring?
  • Accessibility: Is it easy to move around the community?

Planning ahead is key!

Moving to an independent living community involves a lot of preparation. Involve loved ones in the decision-making process, decide what belongings you want to keep, consider making your current home more saleable, and most importantly, keep asking questions until you feel confident in your choice.

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We're here to help you find the home of your dreams. Contact us today to start your home searching journey!

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