Today's senior living communities are remarkably different from senior housing options a few decades ago. The industry has evolved to meet the needs of a more active and engaged senior generation. Not content to ride out retirement from home, they are looking for communities that help them continue to thrive in later years.
Unfortunately, many negative stereotypes and myths about the industry persist. And they often cause seniors to delay moving to a senior living community.
We thought it would help if we took time to separate the facts from fiction when it comes to senior living.
Myth: Senior living communities don't provide residents with very many activities beyond playing Bingo and watching television in the community’s lounge.
Fact: This is far from true! Residents in senior living communities have a wide variety of life enrichment activities far beyond Bingo to participate in. Programs focus on nurturing the body, mind, and spirit.
At Allegro communities, for example, residents can start their day by taking a morning stroll with friends or joining an exercise class. The afternoon might be filled with a gathering of the resident Cooking Club members who head to dinner together afterward. Or the afternoon could be spent in a continuing education class held at the community. Movie night or a game of blackjack concludes the day.
Myth: Senior living communities are expensive. Only wealthy retirees can afford them.
Fact: When you factor in all of the services and amenities that are included in the monthly fee, you will see that senior living can be a cost-effective solution.
At home, you have many fixed expenses to pay each month, even if your mortgage is paid off. Utilities, snow removal, lawn care, homeowner's insurance, property tax, maintenance, repairs, and groceries are just a few. You might also pay for help with housekeeping tasks and meal preparation. Some seniors also have gym memberships. You might have a car and all of the expenses that go along with that.
These expenses are typically included in the monthly fee once you move to a senior living community.
Myth: Senior living communities look dark and depressing.
Fact: This myth dates back to nursing homes built a generation ago. They were often constructed to resemble a more clinical environment. Today's senior living communities are light, bright, attractive, and fresh. Most look more like an upscale condominium community.
You’ll find attractively furnished common areas where residents gather to socialize and enjoy one another's company.
Myth: Senior living communities have terrible food.
Fact: This is another myth that doesn't hold up when you visit a senior living community. Fine dining with chef-prepared meals is the new standard. Menu choices cater to residents' individual preferences. Many communities prioritize using locally sourced foods.