Community Blog

Living Well through Independent Living

By Ketan Patel

When it becomes apparent that housework, meal preparation and other chores are too much for your aging loved one, you might consider independent living. Family caregivers may know something about nursing homes and they might have a general idea of services provided in an assisted living facility, but independent living remains a mystery.

For many seniors over the age of 55, independent living is a good choice, especially if the facility is part of a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC). Independent living can provide just the right amount of support to allow seniors to enjoy life while maintaining their autonomy as much as possible. Best of all, independent living facilities are likely to allow seniors to bring along their in-home caregiver for one-on-one attention and assistance with daily personal care.

Who Benefits from Independent Living

Look into an independent living facility if you feel your aging parent would appreciate having the responsibilities of home ownership lifted and would benefit from increased social opportunities. An independent living community does not provide assistance with activities of daily living (ADL’s) like bathing, dressing and medication management. However, independent living facilities typically provide an alert system and live-in management if your loved one needs help in an emergency. When you visit, look for convenient amenities like a clubhouse, a swimming pool, a library and a beauty and barber shop onsite.

What is Independent Living?

A typical independent living residence is a studio, one or two bedroom apartment, although some communities offer other housing types. The residence commonly includes a kitchen so the senior can eat some meals privately. Meal options include restaurant-style dining rooms where your loved one can eat dinner and one or two other meals per day. Independent living facilities offer laundry and housekeeping services, social events and programs, and exercise equipment. Residents may be able to keep their car, and they can take advantage of transportation to doctor’s appointments and destinations in the local area. Many independent living communities provide educational opportunities, group activities and wellness programs.

Paying for Independent Living

The yearly cost of an independent living facility varies widely. The price tag can range from $12,000 per year to over $40,000 per year. Paying for an independent living facility can be a challenge. Unlike an assisted living which may accept supplemental security income, an independent living community will accept private pay and long-term care insurance. Veterans may also be entitled to benefits that can be applied to an independent living.

When It’s Time to Move On

When your aging parent needs additional support, even with the help of a private caregiver, it may be time to move on from an independent living community and look into assisted living or skilled nursing care. An assisted living will provide daily personal care by helping with activities of daily living. Other assistance can be provided, such as medication management and memory care at some facilities.

Enlisting the Help of a Caregiver

A trained in-home caregiver from a reputable home health care agency can help an aging senior in an independent living facility for personalized attention. Home Helpers of South Shore is owned and operated by a compassionate health professional with a strong understanding of the needs of aging seniors. Contact Home Helpers to help your aging loved one.

Please fill out the form on the left and we will get in touch with you about setting up in-home health care, or call us at 781-585-1244 to determine the plan that is right for you.

We serve the following communities:

Abington , Braintree , Brockton , Buzzards Bay , Carver , Cohasset, Dighton , Duxbury , Falmouth , Halifax , Hanson , Hingham , Holbrook , Hull , Humarock , Kingston , Lakeville , Marshfield , Mashpee , Middleboro , Norwell , Pembroke , Plymouth , Plympton , Quincy , Randolph , Rockland , Sandwich , Scituate , Taunton , Wareham , Weymouth , Whitman