January 25, 2019
Have you been wondering if you should stay at home or move to an assisted living community? From cost to social activities to a sense of independence, many factors go into deciding what’s best. If you or your loved one is hesitant to move, it may seem easier to put off the decision. Or, maybe you’re unsure of what assisted living really involves. However, it’s never too early to start understanding your options for today and the future.
Below, we’ll consider five major factors that affect your choice. Use these to guide your decision and feel confident you’ve picked the right place.
Consider Time Spent on Daily Tasks
Daily tasks may include preparing meals, cleaning house, yard work, self-care, or home upkeep. By staying home, you’ll keep the responsibility for completing or coordinating many of these items. Eventually, you may find they take more time or effort than before.
On the other hand, assisted living provides help with many daily tasks. Prepared meals mean you don’t have to worry about cooking. Routine exterior and interior maintenance are included. By letting someone else take care of these jobs, you’ll have more time to focus on what you enjoy.
Loneliness and isolation remain common among senior adults. In fact, Psychology Today reports more than 20 percent of people over age 60 often feel very lonely. Further, studies show a link between feeling lonely and health problems like heart disease or dementia.
Some may have plenty of opportunities to socialize near their home. But, if staying at home results in isolation, assisted living might be the best choice for overall well-being. With planned social activities and other seniors nearby, it provides many chances to connect.
Some senior adults think they’ll lose independence by moving out of their home. However, you may find quite the opposite. As you age, you may become dependent on others to take care of your home or to go places.
Most older adults don’t want to worry family or friends by asking for help. And, sometimes schedules make it hard to do something when needed. Assisted living has the benefit of having others nearby 24/7. Also, built-in transportation makes it easier for you or your loved one to get out more often.
Focus on the Future
In the short-term, staying at home may make sense for you or your loved one. Still, if you think eventually you might move to assisted living, sooner may be better. Too often, older adults wait for a medical issue or major life change before they consider assisted living.
By thinking about it earlier, you’ll have time to really understand your options. Making the move while you’re younger also typically makes packing up and settling back in easier. Then, when a change in health or other status happens, you’ll already be in place that can care for your needs.
Think About Expenses
Keeping up a home and caring for yourself or a loved one can get expensive. A study by the AARP found family caregivers spend as much as 20 percent of their annual income on caregiving. Take time to review your monthly expenses at home. And, be sure to include things like yearly property taxes and home maintenance.
Assisted living communities typically combine all of your costs into one single payment. Once you compare the costs of staying home with assisted living costs, you may find the total is similar. Plus, many like the simplicity of only having to worry about one payment, instead of dozens.
Need help comparing the cost of staying home versus assisted living? Use our free cost comparison checklist.
Call (214) 328-4161 and learn more about your assisted living options at Autumn Leaves.