As everyone gets older, retires, and starts thinking about a different future, plans must be made. The question is, do seniors want to make their plans now or delay until someone makes plans for them? It is always better to make your own living plans while you can. Many seniors are being proactive and choosing senior living plans that will change as their needs change. As there are more people living longer, there are more senior communities being built and planned.
What Are the New Senior Living Options?
There are several types of senior living arrangements to choose from. The one that is right today may change as one ages. It is important to study them all and make plans for the future. Planning for the future and making a list online or on paper to give to the family will save a lot of trouble and heartache in the future. If a person or couple does not have a family, they should give their research into future senior living to a trusted friend or medical or legal adviser.
Here are the choices in senior independent living and assisted living:
- Staying in One’s Home With Help. The older adult lives in their long-time home or with family. This works for older adults who are pretty independent and healthy and have a good support system available. Ways to make this work include making changes to the home to make it senior and handicap-friendly and hiring in-home caregivers as needed to help with home maintenance, cleaning, meal prep, and daily living needs. Seniors pay for each service.
- A village Concept. This model connects senior homeowners, neighbors, and businesses together so seniors have the help they would get in a senior community without leaving their homes. The administration of this program acts as a concierge service. They connect village members, businesses, service providers, neighbors, and youth groups doing community service to provide help as needed. The senior pays an annual fee.
- Independent Living Communities. These are independent living homes designed for seniors and as part of an organized senior community. The homes can be apartments, townhomes, or detached homes. They are popular with seniors who want to live in a community setting with activities, and services such as home maintenance, cleaning, and even cooking. They may have a cafeteria for seniors to eat some meals at. The housing is smaller and easier to navigate and care for. Seniors pay a relatively high cost per month. They keep their independence as much as possible.
- Residential Care Homes. These are adult family-style homes that care for a small number of adults needing more individual care and like a home setting. The residents get meal service, lodging, and help with daily living activities. This is a medium-cost option that is less expensive than nursing homes or assisted living communities.
- A Retirement Community With Continuing Care. These communities combine independent living with assisted living and skilled nursing options as needed. This is like a retirement community that can change the level of services as needed so seniors don’t need to move as their needs change. It is also good for couples where one requires more services but they want to stay together. Residents move as their needs change to different parts of the same community. They don’t need to take care of the moving details. That is handled for them. This is a higher-cost option with fees increasing as the level of care changes.
- An Assisted Living Community. This is made up of small apartments in a care-type setting. Seniors live sort of independently with assistance and higher levels of care. Staff is available 24 hours a day and this is a high-cost option.
- Skilled nursing or Nursing Home Facilities. This is a high-cost option for seniors who will need 24-hour care, such as those with severe physical or mental issues and are unable to care for themselves.
There are companies that offer advice and options for many types and levels of senior living. Wesley Communities in Ohio offer choices for seniors with Patio homes and independent living apartments for seniors.