The Journey To Senior Independent Living: A Complete Guide For Families

senior independent living

Table of Contents

Getting old is unavoidable, and neither can it be paused. When people get turned elderly, they require a special and extraordinary amount of care from their family and friends.

Though it is not easy to see your parents or grandparents needing help as their hair turns grey, it is the reality we all should face at some point in our life.  

There are much elderly care and nursing homes but sometimes they might feel they are getting to depend on other people. So, you can also look for your elderly family members if you know how you can provide them with in-home care services with independent living.  

Moving into senior independent living is no longer the stigma it once was. Instead, senior living can be made brimming with exciting prospects and multiple options.

Basically, having lifestyles that make younger people wish they could move in right away. However, narrowing down the alternatives and taking action can be overwhelming, especially at first. 

In the meantime, there is a lot to consider before you help them with independent living. Though you might feel a little bit of pressure in the beginning, having proper information helps a lot.  

 

1. Must Have a Proper Schedule  

One of the first things you need to decide is how you will be managing daily life activities. For that, you must schedule your time with your work and family. 

 Try to coordinate with all your family members so that you can be there for your elderly family members at the time of their need.  

In addition, if they are planning to live in a senior home, you should make sure that they do not feel left out.  

When planning a visit to a senior home for your senior, attempt to coordinate with your siblings so that you may all go together. Just remember to stop by for special events like birthdays, anniversaries, graduations, and so on.  

 

2. Give More Time to Research  

Once you have decided on everything, you must do proper research. You may have a substantial number of communities to choose from, depending on where you live.  

This might be beneficial or detrimental, depending on your ability to narrow down exactly what you desire.  

That is why it is necessary to conduct your research and understand exactly what you are looking for to find a community that meets and exceeds all your wants and needs. 

One of the easiest and great places is to start with a Google search which will provide you with the basic information. While looking for the places, another thing to consider is looking at Google reviews.  

Furthermore, you can also ask for their experience with the place that you are looking for. Also, try to find out if independent living would provide the care level you are seeking.

There are different communities that provide various kinds of different levels of care.  

Depending on the finances and benefits you are looking for, you also should figure out the price point. You may want to look for locations that can fit into your budget.  

 

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3. Take A Look into Different Communities  

It is always better to drive up to a few places and take a look by yourself. No matter how much information you get online or from other people, sometimes it may or may not meet your expectations.  

While visiting the place, you get to experience the atmosphere, food, community, and staff. As you know, if you have ever bought a house, a place that looks fantastic in images may have a lot of faults you won’t notice until you step inside. 

While taking the tour around the residence and the neighbourhood makes sure you ask all the question that you want to know.  

Before deciding on one, make sure you take a brief tour of each of the communities.

For good decision-making, you may want to visit different places on different days. Likewise, meet people around the community and try to have a conversation with them. 

 

4. See If You Can Get the Necessary Help 

If your senior is comfortable in a nursing home they would want to be among other people their age with whom they can socialize. In such a case, you should start looking for the best nursing home in your area.  

You should begin your search near your house so that you can conveniently drive to the nursing home every weekend without spending too much time on the road.  

If there are no suitable services near you, you can consider looking for ones near a trustworthy family member who you know will visit them on a regular basis.  

 

5. Make A Suitable Choice  

Once you go through all the viable options, it is time to make a suitable choice considering all your choices.  

This can be a lengthy and frustrating process. However, if you do your study and listen to your gut, your instincts will not lead you in an incorrect direction. 

Before that, make sure you have looked around the neighbourhood, available resources, safety, and all the other essentials for the elderly citizen.  

 

6. Process To Move  

Though you have made your selection, things don’t end there. There are quite a few things that you must go through before moving to your new place.  

First thing first, you should meet an Elder Law Attorney to prepare the appropriate documents. These are attorneys who specialize in the legal needs of aging and/or the preparation of end-of-life care documents. 

The second thing is, that you must request and receive Veteran’s benefits. If you or a loved one served in the military, or if you or they were married to someone who did, contact a Veteran’s benefits adviser to find out what financial programs you may be qualified for. 

What Is Independent Living? 

The word “independent living” refers to a multitude of senior housing options. There are age-restricted communities that only house people over the age of 55.  

Many of these are rental communities that do not provide care. Life Plan Communities also offer independent senior living as well as assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing. 

These residential communities typically provide an active lifestyle as well as independence from the hassles of home maintenance. Apartments, standalone cottages or villas, duplexes, townhomes, and condos are available in a range of floor plans and sizes.  

Independent living services and amenities are intended to make life easier and more comfortable for residents.  

Housekeeping, linen service, meal plans, transportation, and security are all popular services. A fitness facility, pools, various dining venues, beauty and barber salons, woodworking shops, art studios or crafting rooms, and entertainment areas such as auditoriums, game rooms, or movie theatres are common amenities. 

Reasons To Choose Independent Living  

You may be wondering when the right time to move to the community is. If you chat to residents of senior assisted living homes, you will find that many of them wish they had made the transition sooner. 

One of the reasons to choose independent living for senior citizens is because they no longer have to cope with the costs and difficulties of housekeeping or yard work.  

They are not required to do dishes if they do not wish to cook. They have more time to do what they enjoy and to explore new hobbies. And if they had moved in sooner, they could have stayed for even longer. 

In addition to that, it’s common for residents to realize how little they were accomplishing while still living in their homes. They may be as busy as they want with so many opportunities at their fingertips. 

When people reach a certain age, social isolation can have a negative impact on their physical and mental health. As an independent living resident, social activities range from casual get-togethers with friends to resident clubs, outings, and parties. 

Different Types of Independent Living  

Although all independent living communities have some fundamental characteristics, they are not created equal. As you begin your search, you may come across many words for housing styles that fall under the category of independent living for seniors.  

Retirement communities and senior flats, for example, provide slightly different services. 

 

  • Retirement Home/Communities  

While retirement independent living communities are designed to promote residents’ independence, some provide 24-hour emergency assistance and access to medical treatment in the event of a health change.  

 

  • Senior Apartments  

Senior apartments, often known as congregate care homes, provide some of the same benefits as retirement communities but with fewer services.  

Seniors can keep their privacy in one- or two-bedroom apartments with full kitchens and bathrooms while sharing common spaces like dining rooms to provide a friendly, community feel. 

 

  • Retirement Communities  

Continuing care retirement communities, also known as life plan communities, provide a variety of residential alternatives. It ranges from independent living to nursing facility care all in one location.  

Seniors value the independence of an active, sociable lifestyle, as well as the added security of onsite medical care and the knowledge that long-term care is accessible if necessary.  

These communities reduce the need for people to move to multiple facilities as their health needs change. Instead, members enjoy the convenience of an all-in-one community that they can call home in the near future. 

Difference Between Independent and Assisted Living 

The distinction between independent and assisted living is that assisted living offers personal care help while independent living does not. Both types of communities provide on-site amenities and activities, as well as interior and exterior upkeep and ready-to-eat meals. 

Assisted living is a facility for elderly or disabled persons who require assistance with some of their daily tasks as well as access to medical care when necessary.  

Such persons, or their families, may choose assisted living facilities where expert assistance is available. Residents of assisted living facilities may require continuing medical care as well as skilled nursing services. 

Assisted living communities may offer longer hours of programming per day, particularly in memory programs, and activities may be offered in smaller groups or with greater customization to the resident’s physical and cognitive ability. 

Dinner is frequently included as part of your monthly cost of independent living, and many communities provide a variety of alternatives ranging from fine dining to informal take-out, or members prefer making meals at home. 

All meals are usually included in assisted living, and residents are invited to dine in the dining room with their friends. Mealtimes are critical times for social interaction. Both sorts of communities often provide a full calendar of educational and recreational options. 

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How Family Are Involved in Independent and Assisted Living  

Families are encouraged to become involved in the community in independent living, but the person makes most decisions.  

Family members are welcome to visit their loved ones and make use of the many amenities available throughout the neighbourhood.  

Nevertheless, family members often take a more active role in their loved one’s care in assisted living, especially for seniors with dementia. Family members who have been designated are kept up to date on their loved one’s condition and are involved in the care planning process.  

Likewise, family engagement and support are critical to a person’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being. It is critical for families to feel accepted in an independent or assisted living environment. 

Average Cost for Independent Living 

If we average the $4,750.00 weekly cost over 7 days in a week with no Public Holidays, live-in care costs between $563.77 and $678.57 per 24 hours/day. 

If a resident of an independent community needs personal care, they must employ their own aid and pay for such services separately. Their monthly fee to the community can be added.  

Always ask what is included in the monthly cost when selecting any independent living community. While many independent living communities offer services such as food and housekeeping at a monthly fee, others may charge for these services on an individual or as-needed basis. 

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