A major consideration for many people as they get older is giving up their home and moving to senior retirement communities. Priorities change. The house and garden are just too much. The house is too quiet. Health problems start creeping in. Finances are starting to pinch.
The decision to move to a retirement community can be quite difficult. Often requiring delicate family negotiations to either understand or support the parents decision.
There are now many varied housing possibilities available for seniors with new communities opening every day. These senior retirement communities range from those where residents live independently through to full care nursing homes.
These facilities are characterised by older residents living in an area in which there is some combination of shared services, amenities and support. Providing a wider range at a cheaper cost than one could enjoy living in your own home.
The exceptions are upmarket golf, ocean view or country estate communities where the maintenance fees for the facilities are relatively high.
The size and facilities and services provided in senior retirement communities range significantly. This also results in a wide range of costs.
Some communities are subsidised for those people with limited incomes either by the state, charity or faith-based groups.
The smallest and most basic of these senior retirement communities is a home sharing arrangement in a single home or apartment. Where more than one person lives and shares the kitchen and communal living space. This arrangement will suit you if you are reasonably independent but are looking for company or additional income.
The other community living options will be considered on the basis of cost and individual preferences.
Ranging in size from a few houses or apartments up to virtually independent villages. These villages will usually provide a range of accommodation. The range of services will often be related to the size of the community. Many of these senior retirement communities will be age based and may include people who are both retired and those nearing retirement.
This is often a major consideration and most senior retirement communities provide access to medical services such as nurses, prescription medication delivery and other help.
You should also consider the safety of living in a retirement community as you begin to age; this factor alone can be worth a tremendous cost to many individuals who are without others to care for them in their own homes.
It becomes more and more inconvenient to prepare meals for yourself as you age. As a result old people may become disinterested in food as they either find it too much effort or just can't be bothered to prepare meals.
Malnutrition in aging people is a growing problem. For this reason certain communities require residents to have a minimum number of meals and the cost is included in the monthly levy.
These meals are designed to be nutritious and healthy. Meals times also ensure that residents have some daily social interaction.
Services like cable and internet will usually be cheaper in senior retirement communities. Utilities like water, electricity and gas will also normally be cheaper as they are required for a smaller space.
There is a number of insurance savings you can make if you live in a senior community. Your home owner's insurance will be eliminated. Your automobile insurance can decrease significantly if you rely on the community provided transit the majority of the time you travel. Many seniors even get rid of their cars once they move into a community with transport services.
Whilst there may be some resistance about moving from ones own home to one of these senior retirement communities, many people I've spoken to regret the time they wasted in resisting the move ... so often the move will provide a welcome lifestyle boost.