Staying Home or Move to Assisted Living? Deciding What’s Best.
At some point, many older adults and their loved ones talk about moving out of the family home. But, it’s not always an easy decision. Many factors affect your choice to stay at home or move to assisted living.
Discover the benefits of assisted living and which lifestyle factors are most important to you. Use this comparison video to help you make your decision.
First of all, do some research on the features and services provided by assisted living. You may not know all that’s included. Then, compare assisted living and staying at home on several factors. Below, we’ve provided five common areas that you might want to consider as you make your decision.
To start, safety is an important factor to consider. Many times, those who live at home do not have someone nearby in the event of an emergency. Also, many older homes need updates to flooring or bathrooms to make them safe.
Each year, the CDC estimates 3 million senior adults need emergency care for injuries from a fall. Fall injuries – including head injuries or hip fractures – have serious effects on health. Assisted living communities are designed specifically to reduce the chance of falls and keep seniors safe. In addition, you have the peace of mind in knowing someone is always nearby to help.
Think about social connections in your decision. At your current home, do you have enough social contact and activities? Friendships and hobbies not only improve your sense of well-being but also benefit health. In fact, a study at the University of California San Francisco linked feeling lonely to an increase in serious health problems.
Assisted living has the benefit of providing many chances to grow friendships. Usually, communities provide a whole list of monthly activities. And, you’ll have more day-to-day interaction with others like you simply by living close to them.
You may not have thought about long-term stability as a factor in your decision. However, your choice to stay at home or move to assisted living has an impact. For instance, many seniors wait for a major life change – like a medical emergency – to consider where they live. Often, this only adds to the stress of the situation.
Assisted living provides more stability in the event of a life change. You’re already settled in and at home in your community. As your needs change, a community provides a built-in support system that can adjust with you. Overall, the benefits of choosing assisted living in the long-term may outweigh the short-term benefits of staying at home.
Focus on What’s Important
Staying at home comes with many responsibilities. You or your family have to keep up with home maintenance, meal planning, multiple bills, self-care needs, and more. Eventually, many seniors find they can’t keep up with these routine activities. Or, these daily tasks take more time than they used to.
Assisted living takes care of many of the daily tasks for you. You don’t have to worry about meals, transportation, yard work, and home repairs. As a result, you have more time to focus on what’s really important to you.
Finances remain a major factor in your decision on where to live. It’s important to get a complete picture of all your current costs at home. Be sure to think beyond monthly bills like water, electricity, or cable. You should also include the cost of things like home repairs, housekeeping, and real estate taxes.
You may also need to consider the expenses currently paid for by loved ones. According to a report by the AARP, family caregivers often use a large portion of their own money toward the care of their parents. Once you have a complete list of costs, then compare that total with the monthly cost of assisted living. Often, the cost of moving to a community is very similar to the total cost of staying at home.