If you or a loved one is needing a hand with daily tasks or could use a little help with shopping and cooking, you may be considering your options.
Two of the most common is to remain in your home and bring in outside services or to move into a senior living community.
While there can be specialized needs or preferences, the following information can help you gain a better understanding of the basic costs of senior living when comparing the two choices.
Creating a budget for the costs of senior living
One of the best places to start is in determining the type of services that may be needed. Prices for care delivered at home or in a community can vary widely depending on the level of care required and the geographic location.
In order to create an accurate budget for the costs of senior living, it’s best to speak with communities or home care agencies in your area to get specific pricing.
The following are a few of the more typical amenities and services you may want to consider when creating your budget for the costs of senior living:
- Accessible residence
- Assistance with the tasks of daily living
- Help with home maintenance and upkeep
- Help with shopping and preparing meals
- Fitness programs and classes for both physical and cognitive health
- Activities and amenities to remain engaged with others
- Companionship and social opportunities to meet and make new friends
- Housekeeping and laundry services
- Transportation services if no longer driving
- Safety and security measures
Costs of staying at home
Determine the type of care or assistance you or a loved one might need. There will be a difference in cost depending on whether home or healthcare assistance is required, as well as any additional services that might be used, such as adult day programs.
You may be able to offset these costs if family members or friends are able to supplement the care. Calculate the number of hours per day and week that care will be needed. Subtract the number of hours family can provide to arrive at the number of hours you will need to contract with an agency.
To calculate the costs of senior living when remaining at home, you’ll want to include the following:
- Mortgage or rent payments
- Property taxes
- Maintenance and repairs
- Security system
Other expenses if you own a car would include insurance, gas and repairs or alternative transportation costs. To maintain a high quality of life, you will also want to provide for gym memberships, entertainment, social events and other activities, housekeeping, laundry and food.
If your home isn’t accessible or is in need of repairs, you’ll also want to consider an estimated budget for the renovation so you will have a more age-friendly home.
Costs of moving into a senior living community
The cost of a senior living community will vary depending on the type of care that is offered. An assisted living community doesn’t provide medical care but assists your loved ones with daily tasks of living such as bathing, dressing and managing their medication.
When visiting a community, discuss the rates and fees to get a clear picture of what all is included. The following are typically included in the cost of senior living in a community:
- Private residence
- Assistance with daily tasks
- Activities and amenities
- Social events
- Healthy dining programs
- Fitness centers or exercise classes
- Safety and security systems and features
- Scheduled transportation
- Maintenance-free lifestyle
- Housekeeping and laundry
- Utilities, cable television and internet
Download our free “Staying Home vs. Senior Living” guide to help you make an informed decision.