Choosing the appropriate retirement community for yourself or a family member is a difficult process. It can be a difficult financial decision, as well as an emotional one. This is particularly true if the reason you or your loved one needs to make the move is declining health. The good news is that there are plenty of resources available that can help you make the right decision. Although the decision is overwhelming and daunting, generally finances, your loved one’s health, and their wishes for certain amenities and services will narrow the focus almost immediately.  This checklist from AARP presents many categories of questions for you to keep in mind when choose a retirement facility, and is a fantastic resource to bring with you when touring communities.

Financial Considerations

On March 25, A Place for Mom, the country’s largest senior living referral service, released its first edition of The National Senior Living Price Index. The National Senior Living Price Index tracked transactional data collected from consumers and senior living communities across the country from 2011-2014. The data is organized across four primary regions of the United States – West, Midwest, South, and Northeast. The company claims that this is the first independent price index of its kind that was not influenced or created by senior living companies themselves. Pricing is listed by three categories – independent living, assisted living, and memory care (caring for individuals with dementia) — and by region. The categories of assisted living and memory care include the cost of health care. The average cost of each type of community by region is as follows:

  • Independent Living — $2,520 (U.S.); $2,532 (West); $2,362 (Midwest); $2,765 (Northeast); $2,587 (South)
  • Assisted Living — $3,823 (U.S.); $3,771 (West), $3,825 (Midwest); $4,315 (Northeast); $3,562 (South)
  • Memory Care — $4,849 (U.S.); $4,787 (West); $4,958 (Midwest); $5,779 (Northeast); $4,345 (South)

Looking at the average prices of senior living, it is clear that a move into a retirement community is a serious financial investment. Though price is a major factor, it does not tell you everything you need to know about a community. Research and educating yourself on everything you can about a particular community prior to making the commitment is crucial.

Tips to Avoid Last Minute, Emotional Decisions

Most people considering senior living options don’t begin to research communities until a move is imminent. A number of retirement and assisted living communities have long waiting lists. It is important to start researching and shopping for the right facility for you and your loved ones before a move is needed, in order to ensure the ability to move into the community you desire. Know that the move is not an overnight process. It can take an average of three months to move yourself or a loved one into a new retirement community. Building a financial cushion is essential. Moving a loved one into a retirement community is a costly endeavor, especially if they will require around-the-clock care. Figure out the costs early on, and ensure that you have the resources available to pay for your loved one’s residence and care.

Contact Cambridge Realty Capital

As more independent resources become available for consumers to research senior living facilities, you may wish to perform improvements and modifications to your facility.  Cambridge Realty Capital is here to help you with the financing required to improve your community for future residents. Contact our financial experts today.

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