Assisted Living & Higher Levels of Care

Seniors E-Guide – Questions to Ask Series

This content on selecting assisted living and higher levels of care is part of our E-Guide Series

Deciding where to live as one ages and health changes, presents new challenges for many older adults. Anticipating and planning for this stage of life is difficult because how well we will age, and how long we will live is unpredictable. Average life expectancy is lengthening, increasing the potential for chronic health conditions that may threaten independence.

The most important factors for evaluating housing options is to become familiar with the variety of senior housing choices and the health and mobility criteria for living in these various types of senior housing levels.

Another important factor to consider is that many senior housing locations have wait lists. So, start your search early before the actual need arises. You can often put your name or a loved one’s name on a wait list to plan ahead and hopefully avoid a crisis decision.

General Advice

Here are some questions to consider when looking for senior housing. It is important to trust your feelings and reactions when interviewing a location. The following questions are just suggestions. Take the time to consider what your personal needs are and have a family member or friend available to help evaluate responses. Researching online and then follow up phone interviews is a good start but take the time to meet in person and have a tour of the property.

You may want to start your search looking at senior communities located in a neighborhood that you know well. Or sometimes, the move to a senior community is the right time to move to a different part of the country or re-locate so you are closer to family members. As one ages, it is nice to have family in town for visits.

Starting a Search for Senior Housing:

  1. Look at the organization’s website
  2. Follow up with a phone call to the companies that interest you.
  3. Listen and evaluate advice from your doctor, senior professionals and the companies you are interviewing on the care level they are recommending for your health care needs.
  4. Schedule a meeting at the senior housing location and take a tour.
  5. If the services are for an older relative, try to involve them in the final selection if possible.

Find more details and suggestions in our Seniors E-Guide on “Assisted Living and Higher Levels of Care”