Moving into a senior independent living community is a significant life change for seniors and their families. We’ve gathered some tips from Brightview residents to help you make the best decision as you explore prospective senior living communities.
1. Interview Current Residents
Spend some time on the campus chatting with seniors who live there. Some questions to ask might include:
- Do you feel safe?
- Is management quick to respond to concerns, suggestions, or maintenance issues?
- Does the activities program keep you busy and inspired?
- Are you glad you moved from your home into this community?
2. Explore the Dining Program
Cooking is optional in most independent living communities, as many pride themselves on chef-prepared daily menus. Visit prospective communities at mealtimes to assess the fare. Most are happy to invite you to lunch or dinner to show off what they offer. Do you need a special diet for medical reasons? Is the culinary staff able to accommodate that consistently and cheerfully? Ask questions during your visit to find out.
3. Scope Out the Neighborhood
The location of your independent living community is an important consideration, especially if you don’t drive. Do you prefer to see lush green landscapes from your windows, or are you a city dweller who likes to walk to your bank, grocery store, and favorite café? Are the amenities you use most within a reasonable distance, and does the community provide complimentary transportation to make it easy to run errands and arrive at personal appointments on time?
4. Familiarize Yourself with the Pet Policies
If you’re a pet parent, finding a community that welcomes your four-legged companion is a priority. Many pet-friendly senior living communities allow cats and dogs, and some even let you bring birds and fish. You should also ask:
- Is there a pet size limit?
- How many pets can I bring?
- Do I have to pay a pet deposit or an additional monthly fee?
- Is there a dog park or other designated outdoor area for my pet?
- Does the community provide some level of pet care for residents?
5. Do the Math
Every person’s financial situation is unique. We suggest starting by calculating your current monthly costs — mortgage, maintenance, taxes, insurance, utilities, groceries, gasoline, car repairs, etc. Then, factor in any home care assistance or safety upgrades your house might need as you age, and you can get a good idea of your overall costs.
During your visit, ask the community what your monthly fee includes. Typically, a monthly fee includes:
- Linen laundry service
- Prepared meals
- Interior and exterior maintenance
- Cultural events, educational opportunities, fitness classes, and health screenings
If you’re still unsure where to start, reach out to your local Brightview Senior Living community’s Sales Director. They are hidden gems when it comes to compassionately educating people about the aging process, senior living options, and how to navigate this journey.
Brightview Senior Living builds, owns, and operates award-winning vibrant senior living communities in eight states along the East Coast: Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia. We offer senior Independent Living, Assisted Living, Enhanced Care, and Wellspring Village®, a specialized neighborhood for people living with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. Schedule a personal visit to experience our communities firsthand.