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Which One Fits Best? Aging in Place vs. Life Care Community

Oct 15, 2019

Socialization opportunities, lifestyle preferences, physical abilities, daily routines, health needs…all these factors and more need to be considered when it comes time to figure out the place to live your golden years.

“Thinking about what’s next is something senior adults don’t always care to do,” says Lynda Marino, Marketing Director at Canterbury Woods. “Most of us are still pretty independent and active when we retire, and we’re fine living at home, so discussing future lifestyles is something that gets kicked down the road.” This can result, she says, in decisions not being made until the situation necessitates it – and that isn’t always good.

“Few things are more stressful than trying to figure out how to configure your living options when you have an accident or health issue that require you to take action,” she says. “Although it’s easy to say you want to age in place, it may not be the best choice for you or a loved one.”

90 percent of seniors say they want to age in place, according to AARP, and that desire is easy to understand. For many seniors, staying where they are means being close to family and friends, living in a home that’s comfortable and remaining in a neighborhood or community where they have a regular routine that’s familiar to them. It also can be a question of finances because, on the surface, aging in place makes financial sense.

“Many seniors today have their home paid off so the thought of selling and having monthly rent again seems like taking a step backward,” says Lynda. “It’s also easier to keep things the way they are and adjust as life changes directions.”

But is aging in place really the best choice for you or a loved one? Would it make more sense to move to a Life Care Community? Let’s take a look at the two options and break down what they really mean for today’s seniors.

Aging in Place: Comfort and Convenience

You love your home. It’s cozy, you know its quirks and you have a regular routine that allows you to love where you live. Your mortgage may be paid off, and you don’t have a lot of living expenses. Why wouldn’t you want to stay in place?

There’s no question that aging in place offers comfort, familiarity and convenience. However, as you and your spouse get older, you may need to make some serious changes to your current living situation in order to live safely.

For starters, let’s talk about mobility. As you get older, you and/or your spouse may have difficulty going up and down the stairs, or may need rooms to be wheelchair accessible. This could mean costly renovations to your current home. Or, it’s possible that you could get by with the way things are, but this can increase the risk of having accidents and falls.

Next, what happens if your health declines? The obvious solution is to hire an in-home caregiver or have a family member assist you from time to time. While some caregiver services are covered by insurance, others – like going grocery shopping or cleaning the house – aren’t included.

Living at home means you also still have a lot of chores and tasks that need to be taken care of, even if you aren’t doing them yourself. Mowing the lawn, home maintenance, regular cleaning, doing the laundry, shoveling the driveway…that’s a lot of stuff to do, and you may not have the energy or desire to keep doing this year after year.

Aging in place does mean independence for many seniors. However, do some serious thinking about what independence means to you or a loved one. Are you still independent if you’re spending more and more time at home because you don’t want to or can’t get out? Or if you’re relying on others more and more in order to take care of things at home? Does independence mean living by yourself – or does it actually mean being able to do the things you want to do without having to worry about safety, cost or other factors?

Life Care Communities: Not Your Grandma’s Senior Living

Today’s senior living communities have a lot more in common with all-inclusive resorts than with the nursing homes of the past. These days, seniors move to these communities to have more time to do the things they love, plus have peace of mind knowing that assistance is right there, if and when they need it.

Life Care Communities are senior living communities that allow older adults to truly “age in place” on-campus. These communities have all lifestyles available – independent living, assisted living and memory care. Many also have skilled nursing and rehabilitation services on site so that those needing additional recovery assistance following an accident or an illness can remain “at home” instead of going to a special facility.

Life Care Communities often charge an up-front, buy-in fee from residents, which can cause some seniors to balk at the price. However, depending on the community’s rules, most (if not almost all) of the fee can go back to the senior’s estate. This buy-in also assures continuous care for the senior’s entire stay without additional or increasing fees.

Communities charge a monthly “rent” that covers room and board, utility costs, maintenance and upkeep, security and 24/7 assistance. And that’s just for starters. Senior living communities have a lively calendar of social events and activities, perks like on-site doctor visits, fitness training and so much more.

What Fits Your Needs?

Moving to a Life Care Community does require more of a financial commitment than simply aging in place in your own home. However, we would urge you and your loved ones to really consider factors beyond the price tag. What good is saving money if you’re not able to do the things you want, like see friends, travel or even live securely in your own home?

“The only person who can make the decision is you,” says Lynda. “However, we have found that many of our residents at Canterbury Woods Williamsville end up wishing they had moved to our location even sooner. Our welcoming community of your peers offers security, a spectacular lifestyle and the opportunities you’ve been looking for. We would love the opportunity to speak with you and show you why our Life Care Community has been the choice for so many of the area’s active, independent adults.”

For more information about aging in place versus moving to a Life Care Community, please contact us at (716) 427-6928.

Find Your Fulfillment

Canterbury Woods Williamsville is a Continuing Care Retirement Community like you’ve never seen. Canterbury Woods Williamsville is not only close the perfect location for rest and relaxation, thanks to 62 tranquil acres, but there’s also easy access to Buffalo’s urban location. Offering the highest quality lifestyle and security, you’ll be part of a welcoming community consisting of both friends and neighbors while experiencing gracious living, first-class health care and the freedom to create the lifestyle you desire.

Continuum of Care

As a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC), Canterbury Woods Communities provide a comfortable environment and first-rate services to support every level of need. Assisted living apartments allow Williamsville residents to benefit from additional support while maintaining their independent lifestyle. If skilled nursing, rehabilitation or memory care is ever needed, residents can experience the support they require. They can also enjoy all this and more at our sister community in Buffalo. 

Contact us today to discover more about Canterbury Woods Williamsville! (716) 427-6928

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