Posted by Positive Aging SourceBook on 01/10/2020

Understanding Housing Options - Accommodating a variety of needs, tastes and budgets

Understanding Housing Options - Accommodating a variety of needs, tastes and budgets

The senior living industry can seem overwhelming, but the important thing to keep in mind is that there is a housing option perfect for every person and every situation. Start here to find it.  

What housing options are available and how can they help me?

SMART lifestyle Communities are not senior living properties. They are unique housing options that offer excellent locations, lots of amenities and none of the stigma that is too often associated with senior living communities. 

Life plan communities are also known as continuing care retirement communities. These communities generally feature care options ranging from independent living to long-term nursing care on one campus. Residents can transfer to higher levels of care as needed. 

For older adults who want to leave the burdens of home maintenance behind, independent living communities may be the ideal option. In addition to property upkeep, these communities also generally offer 24-hour security and activities to keep residents engaged. Most independent living communities are rental properties, although some do offer the option for residents to purchase units. 

Individuals who need assistance with the activities of daily living may want to consider an assisted living community. In addition to daily assistance, these communities also offer activity programs to fit the interests of every resident. 

Assisted living communities are an important option for older adults who need some level of help on a daily basis. All of these communities offer standard services including daily meals; supervision; security; and help with the activities of daily living, or ADLs. ADLs can include assistance with bathing, dressing and toileting. Some communities also offer help with medication management; transportation services; and coordination of medical, health and dental treatments. 

Finally, whether for a short-term rehabilitation or a long-term medical stay, nursing and rehabilitation centers are a vital senior living option. Nursing and rehabilitation centers serve as permanent residences for individuals who are too sick or frail to live at home. They are also ideal for short-term stays for individuals who are recovering after a surgery or an illness. 

How should I find a housing option?

Use our research. Sourcebook features detailed articles, checklists, featured listings and comprehensive tables in each of our specific housing sections. Use these resources to begin your search for a community that is right for you and your family. 

After selecting the type of community that best fits your wants, needs and budget, you should start calling individual properties to request additional information. Most communities can provide detailed brochures, helpful websites and easy-to-understand financial information. 

If the thought of moving and downsizing is overwhelming, there are professionals available to help with every step of the process. Please see our moving and downsizing section.

Finding the right community will lead to a happier and healthier life, as well as added peace of mind for family caregivers. 

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