If you or your loved one is thinking about moving into an independent living community, there are numerous factors to consider. One especially important component is cost.
Financial planning is necessary since many seniors receive a fixed income each month. It also brings peace of mind to both seniors and their family members by eliminating one more thing to worry about.
Although it’s not feasible to plan for every unexpected event or expense, it is possible to create an overview of projected expenses to help estimate likely costs. This is also true for estimating the costs of moving into a senior living community or staying in place while aging.
If you are currently trying to decide if a senior living community will be an affordable option for you or your loved one, keep reading to find out what to consider when comparing the financial costs of moving to senior living in Herndon, VA, or aging in place.
Costs to Consider When Moving Into a Senior Living Community
A one-time cost to expect is the cost of moving. This may include the cost of selling your current home as well as services to assist with downsizing, packing, moving, and unpacking. Check with the senior living community staff to see if there are trusted local companies to partner with during the moving process.
The most important cost to contemplate is the recurring monthly cost of the senior living community. Most communities provide an all-inclusive price that covers your living space, utilities, meals, transportation, housekeeping, fitness and entertainment options, and possibly other services and amenities. This eliminates many fluctuating costs and bundles them into one predictable price.
Something else to think about is the level of care you anticipate needing down the road. Although you can’t necessarily predict the future, you may want to overestimate your expected costs by assuming you will need additional care as you age. Many senior living communities partner with local medical professionals to offer home health visits or more flexible care within the community itself if you need it. In our Arbor Terrace of Herndon independent living community, we are proud to provide access to local home care options through a provider we know and trust.
Some communities, like Arbor Terrace of Herndon, post a cost estimate on their website, while others require private inquiries. To hear the most current price quote and available amenities and services for the senior living community you’re considering, we recommend giving their office a call or scheduling a tour.
Costs to Consider When Aging In Place
When living in a private house or apartment, you may incur many unpredictable expenses. To help you feel more financially prepared, we’ve put together a detailed account of regular expenses, some of which can be easily overlooked.
The most fundamental expense to plan for is your rent or mortgage and home or renter’s insurance, both of which allow you to remain in your current space. If you own your home, property taxes and utility bills are also applicable. Maintenance, repairs, and regular upkeep of the home, property, and appliances should be expected. It’s important to plan for a range of scenarios—from simply needing fertilizer for your lawn to finding a leak behind your dishwasher that leads to a total kitchen remodel to eliminate mold—because you never know what surprise will happen next.
Expenses for entertainment, hobbies, and food should also be taken into account. Although some of these expenses may occur whether remaining in place or moving, other costs may be eliminated if moving to a senior living community. The cost of going out to play a round of golf won’t be eliminated, however, the cost of going to a fitness center to remain flexible and strong would likely be included in a senior living community. The cost of keeping snacks or light groceries will remain, but two or three daily meals will be cooked for you in senior living communities.
Forecasted future needs, such as a higher level of care and accessibility updates to your living space, should be recognized. If mobility becomes limited, home health visits or a caretaker may become essential to remain in place. Similarly, accessibility updates such as shower bar supports, ramps for stairs, and doorframes wide enough for wheelchair access may also become necessary. Thinking through the potential costs associated with these can help you feel financially prepared to face them later on.
Which Option Is Best For You or Your Loved One?
There is no perfect formula to figure out the right option for each individual. However, a senior living community may be more affordable than you think, providing more predictable costs with plentiful services and amenities to take care of your needs without leaving home.
Curious to find an accurate cost estimate between expected expenses for a senior living community and aging in place? Check out our free, straightforward senior living cost calculator to see your side-by-side cost comparison today.