Is your family discussing senior living options for a loved one who needs assistance with daily tasks, or requires specialized care while living with dementia? If so, conversations will usually include budgeting and finances.
While each family’s circumstances can be unique, there are some common action steps you can take when considering funding senior living.
The following information is a guide to help account for typical expenses and different sources you may wish to consider.
Tips for funding senior living expenses
1. Assess the type of community needed
The fees and expenses for each type of senior living can vary widely so before budgeting, it’s essential to understand the type of community that would provide the right experience for your loved one. Here are three common categories:
- Independent living: Ideal for active and independent adults who can live on their own but prefer a maintenance-free community with the convenience of on-site activities, fitness, social events and dining.
- Assisted living: For those who can otherwise live independently and want to participate in engaging activities and social events but need assistance with daily tasks such as bathing, dressing or medication management.
- Memory care: Specialized care is provided for individuals who are living with dementia or other cognitive impairments. Communities are designed to promote quality of life while offering therapy programs and security for their residents.
2. Create the budget
Once the type of senior living is determined, you can obtain the monthly fees for communities in your area. You’ll discover that the rates for funding senior living can differ depending on the level of services offered, amenities and even the geographic location. It’s best to contact specific organizations directly, as online estimates are often too broad of a range.
When meeting with communities of interest, you’ll want to confirm everything that is included in their fees, such as:
- Accessible residence
- Assistance with daily tasks
- Healthy dining programs
- Activities and social events
- Scheduled transportation
- Security and safety features
Most communities provide a basic rate but may include additional options that can be priced separately.
Download our complimentary Family Guide to Funding Senior Care & Housing to learn more.
3. Consider funding sources
Now that you have a budget established for expenses, you’ll want to identify all income streams that might be available to cover senior living expenses. Begin by making a comprehensive list of sources. If there will be a shortage of funds, the family can explore other resources that might be able to make up the difference.
The following accounts may be available to fund senior living expenses:
- Social Security or other income sources
- Pensions and retirement accounts
- Bank checking and savings accounts
- Investments and annuities
- Long-term care insurance
4. Explore alternative funding resources
Often families are unaware of the additional resources that might be able to contribute to funding senior living.
Take a look at the following options and see if any might apply to your loved one:
Veterans’ benefits: If your loved one is a Veteran or the surviving spouse of a Veteran, they may qualify for benefits under the Veterans Aid and Attendance benefit program.
Life insurance policies: If your loved one is the holder of a life insurance policy, there may be opportunities to convert or cash out the policy to contribute to senior living expenses.
Sale of home: If your loved one owns a home and has built up equity, the value of the home minus any mortgage debt, they may be able to tap this source as a means of funding senior living.
There are a few options that might be available including selling the home and using the profits, renting out the home or obtaining a reverse mortgage.
If your loved one is part of a couple, you’ll want to have a clear understanding of how this might affect their options. For example, reverse mortgages typically require the home to be occupied by an owner.
Sale of personal property: If there is personal property that can be sold, such as stocks, bonds, jewelry or artwork, these might create a source of money that can contribute to funding senior living expenses.
The Charleston Senior Living Community
Locally owned and operated, we offer personalized care by our dedicated team members. Setting a new standard in Assisted Living and Memory Care, we don’t define our residents by their limitations or illness but instead believe in focusing on the positive and the possibility.
The Charleston Senior Community includes private apartments for assisted living residents and for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Your loved ones will benefit from our attention to detail, routine health assessments, delicious dining and daily activity programs as we support everyone to live their best life.
Consider a few of our amenities:
- Chef-led dining program
- Community movie theater
- Live entertainment
- Outdoor patio
- Social lounges
If you or your family is thinking about Assisted living or Memory care, we hope you will consider The Charleston Senior Community. We are a trusted resource and are here to answer any questions, contact us today.
We also invite you to download our complimentary Family Guide to Funding Senior Care & Housing to learn more about making the move to senior living.