When Is The Right Time For Senior Living?
You may not feel ready yet for senior living — and we get that — but there are many benefits to choosing to move sooner rather than later. Here are a couple of examples of common objections we hear all the time and why they shouldn’t stop you from making a smart choice for your future.
“I’m Still Active.”
Perfect! Your lifestyle can become more active within a community. If you love to travel, you can “lock and leave” your residence and feel confident that everything will be looked after while you’re gone. You can accompany friends on trips to new restaurants or the theater. You can stop in for interesting lectures on the campus or join a new club. A move to senior living can actually expand your world.
Volunteer opportunities also multiply. With a dedicated activities director, you’ll have someone to plan regular outings and organize in-house projects you can join. If you already have a cause you’re passionate about, spread the word and offer your new neighbors the chance to participate with you.
With a commitment to resident wellness, communities can help you stay active and independent longer than you might in a private residence. You’ll have culinary professionals to cook delicious meals and — if you want — they can help you meet health goals. Fitness classes and access to fitness rooms can help you build strength and stamina so you can pursue your passions with gusto for a long time.
Social opportunities are ripe at a senior living community. Friends and neighbors are as available as you choose. You can join friends for a fun bite to eat or retreat for quiet meals in your residence when you need to recharge. Find someone who also loves to walk around museums or a new companion to join you on the golf course. A community allows you to create a broad social network in a way a private house can’t.
Senior living lets you free your time for more important parts of life. Hang up your rake and shovel. You don’t have to worry about fixing pipes or changing the filters. When you move into a community, you’re prioritizing your time with your loved ones, your interests and your wellbeing ahead of yardwork and chores. You don’t need to spend any more time worrying about when you’ll need to paint the house again or re-shingle the roof. You can take control of your time and choose to do more of what makes you happy.
“I’m Still Healthy.”
When it comes to Life Plan Communities — or Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs), as they’re also known — a lot of people feel that “it’s too early” right up until the point it’s too late. No one can predict sudden health changes. But opting to move before there’s a crisis ensures the best entrée into a community’s health care plans, which can give you peace of mind for the future.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 7 out of 10 Americans over age 65 will need some type of long-term care. When you choose a Life Plan Community or CCRC, you’ll already have a smart plan in place in case you need it. You’re not only ensuring priority access to future care, but you’re protecting yourself against the rising costs of health care. You can wait too long and no longer qualify for the benefits of this kind of contract. So considering a move while you’re still healthy is a smart decision.
If you move with a spouse while you’re both independent, you can avoid more difficult situations down the line. If one of you needs a higher level of care, you can stay together in the same community. When talking to some of our residents, here are other common reasons they chose to move early:
- “I wanted to make sure — no matter what happens to me — my spouse will be taken care of.”
- “This was my gift to my kids. Now, they won’t have to choose for me or feel like they have to be my caregiver down the line.”
- “I’m single and childless, and I want to be sure I’ll have care in the future.”
- “I simply did the math, and I’ll save money in the long run.”
What aren’t you ready for?
You get to decide when the right time is, but choosing senior living is an opportunity to take the future in your own hands. If you make the move to a community when you’re still independent, you’re taking control of your own future — not leaving important decisions to anyone else. You’re also making the most of your investment. You’re giving yourself the chance to take advantage of all of the outings and classes. You can enjoy all the amenities, grow your social circle, and spend less time on household chores.