Living independently has numerous perks, especially for young adults who just started discovering life. However, as you grow older and reach your seniorhood, you might find it more challenging and lonelier to live alone.
For starters, living independently means you don’t have anyone to do the heavy lifting for you, especially when it comes to house chores and maintenance. It’s also increasingly becoming unsafe for you to go out and run errands or shop for groceries on your own.
If this setup does nothing but burden you, then it’s about time to consider a new residential option, one that can make you feel safe, happy, and well-cared for. One such living arrangement you can look into is an assisted living community.
But before Googling “the best assisted living near me,” you should find out first if it’s the right fit for you.
Assisted living facilities provide care and 24/7 assistance for seniors or elderly couples who are still active and social but need an extra pair of helping hands. Additionally, it is a perfect community for:
- Mostly independent seniors who require some assistance in doing activities of daily living, such as bathing, hygiene, and using the restroom.
- Older adults with physical limitations, such as mobility impairment, blurred vision, and frailty. It is also for seniors who have an increased risk of falling and injuring themselves.
- Elderlies with health conditions needing supervision in their medications, diet, and other daily tasks.
- Seniors who require help with home maintenance, cleaning, and financial management,
- Seniors experiencing loneliness and social isolation due to being alone.
Older adults who are still well and active now, but think they might need additional help soon, can benefit from transitioning early to assisted living.
If you think this is the right path for you, then you can find the best assisted living community suitable for your needs and lifestyle preference. Here’s how you can start your journey towards your forever home!
1. Get Help and Recommendations
Hunting and researching for the perfect assisted living community can easily become a stressful task. This is why it’s important to get help from a trusted friend or family member, preferably one who knows how to operate the ins and outs of the internet.
There are plenty of ways to find a senior living community, and it’s for you to decide which strategy suits you best. You can either scope the internet for the best assisted living near me, use your local community’s directory, or get recommendations from your GP, family, or friends.
Additionally, it’s crucial to think about other factors as well, like the location’s proximity to your family so they can visit, nearby hospitals, and of course, your budget.
After scouring your sources and checking possible communities, narrow down your search by listing down your top two or three choices.
2. Visit Your Top Choices
Now that you have your top two or three, it’s time to get to know each facility and see if they’re the right fit. You can call the community you are interested in and inquire about their service. However, nothing beats actual visitation when it comes to choosing an assisted living community.
So if you have the time, you and your companion should schedule a tour of each community in your top choices.
3. Observe and Ask the Important Questions
Before the day of your scheduled tour, it would be better to create a checklist of your concerns or the things you want to ask about the community so you won’t forget them during your actual visit. Some of the things you can inquire about include:
- A breakdown of the facility’s costs and what services are included in their base rate. You can also ask about the services and amenities that might cost extra charges.
- Their staff to patient ratio and how many personnel work during the night.
- Ask about their meal menu options and the activities they provide.
- Inquire about the safety and security of the facility. Do they have grab bars in the bathroom for seniors with mobility problems?
- What basic medical care do they provide? Do they have an on-site nurse or on-call healthcare professional?
- How often do they do housekeeping and laundry?
- Look into the living spaces they have available and other facilities they might have (e.g., fitness studio, activity center).
Besides these questions, you can also make a quiet observation of your surroundings the moment you step foot in the community or while the tour is happening. Does the facility have a welcoming vibe? Are the surroundings clean and fresh? Do the residents seem to be comfortable and enjoying themselves?
The attitude and demeanor of staff and residents can tell you a lot more than the facility’s luxurious amenities, so make sure to pay attention to these things.
4. Make an Informed Decision
After countless hours of researching for the best assisted living near me, it’s now time to make a decision. Of course, it’s crucial to consider the budget, location, and other important aspects in the decision-making process.
But don’t forget to include the emotional factor, such as the positive and friendly atmosphere of the place and how it immediately made you feel at home.
It’s easy to get enticed by the physical appeal of a place or the unique services they provide. But in the end, you will always be at your happiest in a community that feels like home.
Weigh in the observations and suggestions of your family and friends, but always go with what your heart says.
5. Schedule a Second Visit
Once you’ve decided to go for a specific assisted living community, you can do an unscheduled visitation to get a feel of the community.
Make sure to get a copy of their contract and review it thoroughly before signing. You can also ask a family member or your lawyer to help you during the contract signing.
You can also ask for a copy of your room or apartment layout so you can plan early for your downsizing and moving process.