Looking for a retirement home can be overwhelming for many reasons. For a lot of people, it’s new territory. You might not know what to expect or what to look for. There are a ton of resources out there about what questions you should ask and what things you should make sure a community has. You might be feeling overwhelmed by all the information. Independent living or assisted living? How much does it cost? Aside from the finances, services, accommodations, and location, there are a few things that these resources don’t tell you.
Here are four things you might not be thinking about when looking at retirement communities and why you should be!
It might seem counterproductive to your decision-making, especially if you’re on the fence about moving into a retirement community in the first place. But comparing the retirement community and your current living situation might help you choose. It can open up your eyes to stuff you don’t have access to in your current situation, or maybe some things you already have. Either way, making that comparison will help you see some features in the retirement community that might’ve faded to the background for you initially but could provide a sense of comfort or a feeling of home!
Research Reviews and Reputation
Doing your research on your potential future home should be the first step in your search. The retirement community’s websites are great for finding all the information you typically need, like costs and services. But nothing beats the feedback of people who’ve lived there or caregivers or people who had family members live there. Did they have a good experience? Did they have any complaints or anything negative? It’s essential to get both sides of the story when making such a big decision!
Retirement Community and Culture
When looking at a retirement home, paying attention to the sense of community and culture is vital. Do you want a community where there are a lot of different group activities every day, or do you want somewhere that’s just quiet with more alone time? Does the home feel like a community where you could be comfortable? Are there people or groups that are similar to you and your interests? All of this will significantly impact your experience in the community, so it’s essential to consider it when you’re looking at different communities.
Think About Your Wants
Of course, you’ll be thinking about your needs first, like your meals, assistance, services, and access/location. But it’s just as important to think about your wants. Maybe you really want to live in a community with a salon, a bar, or a movie theatre. It’s important to look for these things to find somewhere you’ll enjoy living, not just somewhere that provides the bare essentials.
Most of all, enjoy the process. Looking for a retirement community is the first step in a new chapter of your life. Of course, it can be overwhelming or a little nerve-wracking. Instead of dreading the experience or letting stress take over, enjoying the journey can make this an exciting time rather than a scary one.