There comes a time when we have to make some tough decisions, and in this case, it is deciding on the best senior living community for our elderly loved ones. With so many choices and options available, it can be difficult to figure out which one’s the best fit.
On that note, we’ve decided to list ten important factors you should take into consideration when making this decision.
Let’s check them out!
It goes without saying but, factoring in the cost will probably be one of the most determining factors in choosing a senior living community. Depending on the type of care and services your loved one needs, as well as the amenities offered, prices can range from very affordable to “do we really like the pops so much?”.
All jokes aside, be sure to sit down with your family and figure out a budget before even beginning your search. This will help to narrow things down and save you a lot of time.
There are two things to consider when considering a location – how often you plan on visiting and your loved one’s preference. If you live in the same city, then great! But if you live a few hours away or even in a different state, you’ll want to choose a location that’s easier for you to get to.
As for your loved one’s preference, some may want to be closer to family and friends while others can’t wait to get some alone time. It’s important to have a discussion with your loved one about this so you can get an idea of what they’re looking for.
3. Size Of The Community
Not every old person is grumpy and loner, but not all of them are social butterflies, so you’ll kind of have to get it just right when it comes to choosing the size of the retirement community.
Do they want to be in a smaller, more intimate setting where everyone knows each other? Or are they looking for a bigger community with more people and activities? Talk to them about what they want and or keep their personality in mind when making this decision.
4. Types Of Housing Available
This is probably one of the main factors to consider. Not that other ones are less important, but this is something that will directly affect your loved one’s everyday life.
Do they want to live in an independent living community where they have their own space but still have access to communal areas and activities? Are they looking for a more supportive environment with assisted living or memory care? You’ll have to have an answer to these, and several other questions if you want to answer this question right and provide your loved one with a precious final chapter.
5. Level Of Care Provided
This one kind of plays into the last one, but it’s important enough to consider on its own.
What kind of care does your loved one need? Do they need help with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, and eating? Are they in need of more specialized care such as memory care or skilled nursing? Do they need round-the-clock care or an occasional check-in?
You’ll need to have a good understanding of your loved one’s care needs before you can make an informed decision about the right retirement community.
6. Activities And Social Opportunities
Check this out! Senior living Boise Idaho offers its residents a chance to enjoy parties, bingo, country drives, mystery rides, bridge, poker, shopping trips, pizza days, BBQ days and so many other activities. But, do you think that’s enough? Maybe it’s too much?
It’s just like we’ve said earlier, you have to consider your loved one’s personality and preferences. Do they want to be constantly surrounded by people or do they prefer a more serene environment? But, no matter what they prefer, there should be plenty of activities and social opportunities available so they can enjoy their retirement years to the fullest if they want to.
7. Services And Amenities Offered
Equally, if not more important than activities and social opportunities are services and amenities.
What kind of services does the community offer? Do they have a full-time nurse on staff? A fitness center? A hair salon? A library? A spa?
There are so many things to consider here, but again, it all comes down to your loved one’s preferences and needs. Maybe they’re lively and they like to swim, walk or play tennis, in which case, they’ll probably want a pool and a tennis court.
8. Dining And Nutrition Options
Eating good food is important at any age, but it’s especially important for seniors.
A retirement community should offer a variety of dining options so residents can choose what they want to eat. They should also have a nutritionist on staff to help residents make healthy choices and to accommodate special dietary needs, which is probably even more important, in our book, than accommodating picky eaters and their desires.
9. Transportation Options
Most folks overlook this portion, however, it is quite crucial.
How will your loved one get around? Can they drive themselves or do they need transportation to and from appointments and activities? Does the community offer shuttle services? If not, is public transportation easily accessible?
You’ll want to make sure that your loved one can easily get around, both inside and outside of the community, if they want or need to.
10. Expertise And Professionalism Of The Staff
Last, but certainly, not least is the expertise and professionalism of the staff. You’ll want to make sure that the staff is up to par before you entrust your loved one’s care to them.
The staff should be able to answer all of your questions and put your mind at ease. But more importantly, they should be skilled, professional, caring, compassionate and patient (because, let’s face it, elders can be painful to deal with).
These are just a few of the things you’ll want to keep in mind when you’re looking for a retirement community for your loved one. Of course, there are other important factors to consider as well, but we think these 10 are a good place to start.
We wish you the best of luck!