One of the biggest fears that seniors have is losing their independence. Most seniors want to support in activities of daily living (ADL). It this possible to give them this support and it is called assisted living. (1)
Benefits of an assisted living community
After a lifetime of caring and working, seniors deserve the mental and physical well-being after retirement. Assisted living community offers a productive lifestyle, social interaction, and appropriate support for seniors who may require routine care. Some other benefits of such living are as follows:
- No boredom
Seniors after retirement are overwhelmed by free hours. Seniors can use these hours to adopt new hobbies and pursue their passion. Many communities offer various activities and programs to keep seniors lively. Such as:
- Movie nights; offer classic favorite movies, snacks, and popcorns.
- Communal gardens; provide a pleasant outdoor place for seniors to sit and spend their time.
- Music and art classes; supposed to encourage creativity and teach advanced skills to seniors
- Card and poker tournaments; engage seniors in healthy and friendly competitions
- Book clubs; promote discussions among seniors
- Support in ADL
The key benefit of assisted living is the providence of support in activities of daily living ADL. These activities may be occasional or routine wise. In some cases, seniors are independent when they start residing in but over time, they require assistance, which is quickly arranged or available on-site in an assisted living system. Health-associated benefits are:
- Caregiver helps; includes giving bath to seniors and taking them to the dining hall or other activities.
- Medication management; helps to keep a record of prescriptions
- Senior care coordination includes taking seniors to the doctor or providing on-site medical treatment.
- Medical staff; includes trained staff and nurses who help in emergencies.
- Intellectual stimulation
Permanent cognitive decline can be avoided by mental stimulation. From language lessons and lending libraries to woodworking areas, there are multiple ways to keep seniors active and engaged. Communities offer brain games that slow the progression of cognitive decline. Local professors and guest lecturers come and speak on interesting topics such as flower arranging or art history. Personal tablets and commuter rooms are provided to seniors so they can develop their technical skills with the help of community staff.
- Security and safety for seniors
One of the main advantages of assisted living is to keep seniors safe and healthy. Security-associated benefits are:
- Fewer fall risks: Centres for disease control (CDC) has stated that in seniors of age 65 and above, falls are the main reason for nonfatal and fatal injuries. Assisted living communities are supposed to enhance mobility and accessibility with flat thresholds, ramps, and hallway railings. Grab bars, walk-in showers, and raised toilets in bathrooms also decline the risks for falls.
- Security: seniors are mostly a target for scams and break-ins. Seniors communities give peace of mind by utilizing alarm systems and security companies.
- Healthier lifestyle
Seniors have nutrition needs and unique fitness. The assisted living community provides them a healthy and balanced meal and organizes transport to take them to physical therapy or fitness classes.
Low-income senior communities
It is a challenge to find inexpensive communities or apartments. However, there are some low-income communities for seniors after retirement. To figure out the appropriate one, seniors have to make detailed research on the available options for the low-income community.
Government programs for low-income apartments
Several government programs help seniors qualified for low-income apartments.
- Housing choice vouchers
Through this program, a senior finds the apartment of his choice. The government pays the voucher-indicated amount to the landlord every month.
- Public housing
Such communities are overseen by country or city public housing agencies. These communities include complexes or apartment buildings.
- Low-income housing tax credit
This program offers apartments to families with low income or includes rent at a fixed rate.
- Section 202 Supportive Housing for the elderly
This initiative aids the disabled and seniors. It provides housing for those who live a partially independent life and need some assistance in their daily activities such as cooking or bathing.
55 plus communities (2)
These communities are owned specifically by couples and individuals age 55 or above. There are several housing options such as even apartments, condominiums, garden homes, and single-family homes.
These communities offer minimal maintenance, enhanced security, and many amenities including golf courses, exercise facilities, community centers, and walking trails. Many communities have activity directors who offer everyday events and programs for residents.
Pros of 55 plus communities
- Minimal maintenance
In many cases, it is the responsibility of homeowners to upkeep their homes. However, the maintenance of the ground and others are compensated in HOA fees.
- Amenities and activities
Multiple activities and amenities are available for residents that keep them engaged and active.
- Quiet neighborhood
55+ communities are best for Couple over 55 age who wants to reside in a peaceful area. Such communities provide a quiet nester to the residents.
- Instant community
Different programs and events are designed to bring residents together. This promotes healthy communication and relationship among them.
Cons of 55 plus communities
- HOAs and HOA fees
Several planned communities include HOA fees and HOAs. These fees along with other 55+ community-associated costs make such residence very expensive.
- Reselling restrictions
Some factors make the reselling of homes very challenging. Such as a couple can resell the home to individuals who must b 55+.
- Lack of diversity
If a couple likes to live with people of the same age and same interest then this type of community is the best fit for them. But it is a bit limited for individuals who like to live in a diverse group of people.
Affordable housing for seniors
There are 4 options for affordable housing for seniors.
- Co-Op housing
Such communities are for older and independent adults who do not require any extra assistance.
- Public housing
This delays or avoids the seniors to move to other nursing institutions that are relatively expensive.
- Virtual retirement community
This community lets the seniors live in their houses and provides them senior services at a low cost.
- Housing choice voucher program
HCVP is for seniors who can live independently without any assistance.