5 mistakes to avoid when looking for senior living apartments

5 mistakes to avoid when looking for senior living apartments

Looking for senior living apartments for a loved one can be a daunting experience. It is hard to acknowledge that they need to live away from home. So, it is important to find a place that has all the right facilities, a caring staff, and a safe environment for seniors. To ensure this, one must avoid these common mistakes that people end up making when looking for senior living apartments.

Not researching different types of senior living facilities
Before starting the search for senior living apartments, it is crucial to understand the different types of living facilities that are available. One should compare various facilities and the amenities they offer. For example, there are several types of senior living options, such as retirement communities, nursing homes, memory care facilities, and residential care homes. Not exploring all of these options can make it difficult to arrive at a correct decision.

Not looking at the future needs of the senior
A common mistake many families make while looking for senior living apartments is not considering the future needs of the senior. They often look at the current health status and requirements of the senior and accordingly pick a living facility. In such cases, problems arise when the individual has to be moved again a few years later if their health changes, and they need a different set of services.

For instance, if one wants to live independently but is expecting to require assistance a few years later, their family should look for a senior living apartment community that has assisted living facilities. Instead of looking for different living options every few years, stick to a single facility that will be able to meet future requirements. Otherwise, the constant movement and transition takes a physical and emotional toll on the senior.

Neglecting the various costs involved
While calculating the cost of senior living, many people just consider the monthly or annual rental. With most facilities listing the rental cost as one number and extra amenities under another, one can easily commit the mistake of miscalculating how much they were expected to spend. To avoid this, always look at the proper breakdown of the costs. Take time to check the services included, various taxes, and extra fees. Also, check whether there are optional amenities that can be done away with. These may include fitness membership, salon services, wellness programs, and so on. Besides, check whether essential services, such as phone service, cable TV, heat and AC, water and sewer, and housekeeping services are charged extra or included in the rental costs. Remember to ask for itemized pricing to get the detailed cost.

Not touring the facility
After shortlisting multiple senior living facilities, make sure to tour each of them. It would be a mistake to simply rely on a phone call or email enquiry or website. The information obtained through these sources would not help in making an informed decision about which community is right for the senior. So, it is crucial to take a tour of the place.

During the tour, remember to observe the cleanliness and hygiene of the facilities. Check if there are any sanitation concerns. It is important that the apartments and common areas look and smell clean. Apart from this, check for the presence of the housekeeping staff across the facility. Then, watch out for any obvious maintenance issues and overall upkeep, such as how well-maintained the furniture, electrical fittings, bathroom fixtures, and flooring are.

In addition to external appeal and hygiene, pay attention to the general activity level of all the residents. Also, look at the responsiveness of staff and whether they seem friendly and caring. The tour can help determine whether the facility is capable of offering a safe, comfortable, and peaceful environment.

Hesitating to ask questions during the tour
Most senior living apartment facilities have a tour guide who provides assistance to family members who are touring the facility for the first time. These guides often provide all the information that one needs to know about the facility. Yet, it is crucial that one prepares a list of questions that are important to be considered for their loved one. These questions can be general, such as what social activities are planned for residents. Or, one can even ask questions that are specific to their loved one, such as the level of care provided for their particular health condition. Further, one should also check if customized or special meal options are available for allergies, lactose intolerance, and so on. Ensure to ask these questions before, during, and after the tour.

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