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Choosing the Right Residence

Retirement communities have become the answer for an increasing number of seniors looking to get out from under the burdens of home ownership, focus more on hobbies and health and increase their social and recreational opportunities.

If you are considering retirement living for yourself or your aging parents, here are five points to keep in mind:

1. Compare the Costs.

NRC’s entry and monthly fees are 33%-45% less than competitive CCRC’s found in the front range of Colorado and surrounding areas.  This makes NRC surprisingly affordable.  Be sure to shop around and compare “apples to apples” and you will find Life-Care at NRC is a tremendous value. 

 

2. Apply while you're still healthy.

Many retirement communities require that their members pass a physical screening and may not accept applicants who are no longer or close to not being able to live as independent. If you wait until your first health crisis to apply to a retirement community, you might not get in. In general, the earlier you decide to apply, the more choices you will have. Those who wait until they become frail will have limited options and less time to make these critical decisions.

 

3. Know your needs.

Right now you are fully independent and active and that is great!  That is the time to join!  Define what kind of services you require. Needs could range from lawn, home maintenance and cooking. You should also think about your interests and look for amenities that would suit your lifestyle, such as a fitness center, golf course or access to cultural events and other activities. Consider your future health needs as well.

(According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, about 70 percent of people over the age of 65 will require some type of long-term care services during their lifetime.) Gauge how likely and how quickly your needs may increase.

Because future needs can be hard to predict, many opt for a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) facility that puts independent living, assisted living, nursing care and memory care all with one company. This way, residents transfer to other parts of the campus as their needs change throughout their golden years.  Be sure they have a Parkinson's, Alzheimer's or dementia facility.  This is an important part of any progressive CCRC.  Memory care is becoming more prevalent as our bodies stay healthier later in years, but our minds don’t. 

4. Location. Location. Location.

Think about where you envision spending your golden years. Are you looking for a climate offering all four seasons? The feel of a small town? Or is proximity to family tops on your list? Don't underestimate the value of being within driving distance from relatives and loved ones. Several people have found that the opportunity to golf year-round couldn't compensate for not being able to have Sunday dinner with the grandkids.

 

5. Take a test drive.

Make sure you visit the community!  Make sure you talk candidly with the residents about what it's like living there and what they think of management. 

Selecting the right senior living community is an important decision that involves more than choosing a floor plan -- it's about security, quality of life and lifestyle. In addition to meeting your social, cultural and recreational requirements, the retirement community you choose should have continuum of care in place to meet your future health needs.
  Remember, it's your life, the retirement community you select simply makes it easier!

 

 

Sources:

1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information, www.longtermcare.gov/LTC/Main_Site/index.aspx

2. U. S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, Continuing Care Retirement Communities: Risk to Seniors, http://aging.senate.gov/events/hr224cr.pdf

This information in this article is general in nature and may not apply to your own financial situation. Please consult your own professional tax, and/or financial advisor regarding this information and your own personal financial needs. For a complete disclosure statement, please see my biography.

 

Northfield Retirement Communities

2100 Circle Drive

Scottsbluff, NE 69361

308-632-4342

 


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