If you or a loved one is in need of a helping hand with daily tasks, managing medications or assistance with preparing meals, you may be considering the options of bringing in additional care services or moving into an assisted living community.
While discussing the advantages of both choices, cost is typically contemplated. When making a decision, families will often examine which is more cost-effective: remaining at home with care services brought in, or moving into an assisted living community.
The answer may surprise you.
When considering the cost of senior living, many families assume staying at home is the most affordable, especially if there is no mortgage. However, what is often overlooked are all of the services that will still need to be funded to achieve a high quality of life.
The cost of senior living
You’ll want to make sure you’re comparing apples to apples to accurately assess the costs of senior living. In order to do this, it can be helpful to make a list of what services and features are needed to age and live well and then calculate the costs of each option.
Download your complimentary Cost Comparison Worksheet!
1. The cost of senior living: an accessible residence
In a community: Age-friendly residences with a choice of floorplans and locations are included in the fee. Residents are also encouraged to personalize their space to make it feel like home.
If remaining at home: Even if the house is owned, you’ll need to include associated costs when budgeting, such as property taxes, insurance, utilities, landscaping, repairs and upkeep. If renovations are required to make the home accessible, include those costs here as well.
2. The cost of senior living: daily assistance
In a community: Trained and compassionate staff are available to assist residents with daily tasks such as bathing, dressing and grooming. These services are included in the monthly fee of assisted living.
If remaining at home: Family members or friends may be able to contribute needed assistance but if there remains a gap, the services of a home care agency may be required. If so, calculate the number of hours multiplied by the agency’s hourly rate for budgeting.
3. The cost of senior living: healthy dining
In a community: Nutritious and delicious dining is included in the monthly fee for assisted living. Residents enjoy the chef-prepared meals and the varied menu selections as well as having any dietary restrictions covered.
If remaining at home: You’ll need to calculate the costs of food and if assistance is needed, any costs of meal preparation. Other options may include contracting with a food service provider.
4. The cost of senior living: activities and social events
In a community: Residents enjoy a monthly calendar of activities and events to choose from that are educational, entertaining or just fun. These perfect opportunities to meet the other residents are all included in the monthly fee.
If remaining at home: To avoid the health risks of loneliness and isolation, families will want to arrange for their loved one to participate in different activities and interact with others. Include fees and transportation costs if applicable when budgeting.
5. The cost of senior living: fitness opportunities
In a community: There is no need to worry about meeting your wellness goals when a senior living community is home. You’ll typically find a fitness center or classes available for the residents and included in the monthly fee.
If remaining at home: Finding and arranging fitness opportunities and transportation for classes or gym memberships will be critical so your loved one can continue to stay in shape, both physically and cognitively.
6. The cost of senior living: transportation
In a community: As older adults give up driving, it’s essential not to feel left behind. Communities include the service of scheduled transportation in their monthly fees so residents can easily make medical appointments, go shopping or attend entertainment events.
If remaining at home: It’s important to avoid the social isolation that often occurs when driving is no longer possible and there are few transportation alternatives. Families will want to budget for ride-sharing programs or coordinate if rides can be provided.
7. The cost of senior living: added security and safety features
In a community: Included in the monthly fee are the security features in both the community and personal residences. A major advantage of assisted living is the reassurance of knowing that help is always available if ever needed.
If remaining at home: Families may need to add security and safety features or personal alert systems to the home to lessen the anxiety of living alone.
Discover life at a Northbridge community.
If you’re considering senior living for yourself or a family member, we hope you’ll visit one of our communities. You’ll find a maintenance-free, activity-filled and engaging lifestyle to help support your wellness goals.
You’ll also discover many benefits in a Northbridge Senior Living community, including our Signature Program S.T.A.R. Club (Sharp Thinking, Active Residents) – which offers our residents several activities to participate in with others, including:
- Daily exercise group
- Walking club
- Tai Chi & yoga
- Nutritional classes
- Library and book club
- Museum outings
- Artists in residence program
- Multi-generational music
- Genealogy Generations
We’re here to answer any of your questions. Please contact us if we can provide further information or if you would like to schedule a personalized tour. Download our complimentary Cost Comparison Worksheet to assist when comparing assisted living to living at home.