man considering moving to a retirement home

How to Pick the Right Retirement Home Community

The transition into an assisted living, memory care facility or senior living community is just like any other move to a new home, it is a major life event, and all the details can become overwhelming! Today, the pros at Florida’s Best Moving detail the top things to consider when looking for the right retirement home community for you or a loved one.  

55+ Community Types  

There are a few different kinds of retirement community options available to you based on your specific wants and needs. Here are a few of the common types: 

Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs)  

Known as “small towns,” these communities provide a transition for residents from independent care to an assisted living or nursing home setting.  

Assisted Living Communities 

Residents are semi-independent and live in small apartments but get assistance with personal care, meals, and medication. These kinds of communities do not provide the level of skilled medical care that a nursing home provides, thus, the overall medical care is the responsibility of the family.  

Age-Restricted Communities  

These types of communities are generally restricted to age 55+ In Florida, one of the largest retirement communities like this is The Villages in Central Florida. Health care services are not provided in this community as seniors live independently.  

Independent Living  

An independent living community is best for those who enjoy recreational, educational, and social activities with people in the same age group. These can be small communities with houses or apartments. Medical care is not included, but amenities are generally covered such as care of the home or yard, etc.  

Nursing Home  

Nursing homes provide 24/7 care for senior citizens that are unable to live independently and need medical care.  

Related: Seniors: Should You Be Downsizing or “Up” sizing?  

Florida’s Best Moving can make the transition to a retirement community or assisted care facility easier and less stressful. Our attention to detail is unmatched, and we insure all of your prized possessions. We can even help pack and unpack!   

Contact Florida’s Best Moving and Storage Tampa Bay or call 813-485-6580 to get a FREE quote!  

Find the Right Community Fit  

The first thing to ask, will you or your loved one be comfortable long term in the community that you choose?  

Of course, the size of the apartment, floor plan location, dining options, decor, and amenities all are factors in the decision process but there are some others to keep in mind as well.  

An assisted living option might not be the best for a younger senior. Before choosing, ask for an activities list to ensure that you or your loved one can enjoy stimulating activities that foster purpose and connection with new friends. Physical fitness is a key quality of life indicator, so ask about fitness programs in the community. We know a lot of seniors have furry friends, so make sure the community you choose is pet friendly if you are an animal lover or have pets.  

Related > Relocation for Memory Impaired Seniors  

Get ready to call a new place your home; we can help make the move easy. For more information on our top-rated moving company, local storage services, or would like a FREE in-home estimate, please call us today at 813-485-6580!  

When You Visit the Community  

Make a list of several candidates and go on at least one or two visits, preferably once during the day, and once at night, to get a feel for the community. Meet with the staff and try a meal. Ask questions and take pictures if helpful in making your decision.  

Things to look for when you visit: 

  • Maintenance of common areas 
  • Appearance of residents 
  • Interactions with the staff 
  • Smell for bad odors  
  • Touch surfaces for cleanliness  
  • Speak with residents  
  • Ask questions about care, activities, staffing, etc. 

To aid in the physical and emotional burden of moving, Florida’s Best Moving offers top-notch services for seniors in the Tampa Bay area. Our commitment to quality has made us one of Tampa Bay’s premier senior movers.  

For a limited time get a 10% OFF Senior Moving Tampa Bay Special. Call today for a no-hassle quote!

Check Credentials 

Before making a decision, check their state licensure, what care is covered, and any citations or violations that they might have received in the past. You can also find out about their performance based on their last state home care survey.  

Ask about the average length of stay for residents, the length of staff employment, and if there is a waiting list.  

Learn What is Included 

Generally, the cost is split up into two agreements: the housing cost, and the survive/care package. Be aware of what is included and what “hidden fees” there are if any. Choose the care package that matches you or your loved one’s condition now. 

Budget for the Future 

If you or your loved one has Parkinson’s or another degenerative disease like Alzheimer’s investigate how much care is provided by the community and how much additional care might cost. As these diseases progress, care can become quite costly. 

Other things to ask about: the quality and location of the nearest hospital, and what measures or preparedness are in place for natural disasters, blackouts, or other emergencies.  

RelatedHidden Costs of Aging In Place  

Get a Medical Assessment  

Getting a complete medical assessment before moving into a senior living community confirms that you have the right level of care and avoids revisions (and possibly higher costs) after move-in.  

If possible, have a qualified nurse at the retirement community do a medical and cognitive assessment so it is part of the record before moving in. This is also a great time to discuss your advanced directives and care priorities (commonly called end of life care.)  

Ready to Move to 55+ Community Living 

Whether you or your loved one plan to move into an assisted living community or a more independent living situation, here are a few last things to keep in mind: 

  • Plan for single-level living.  
  • Look for wide hallways and doorways that are at least 36” 
  • Step-in shower  
  • Be aware of appliance height  
  • Location, location, location. Make sure that there is access to quality health care nearby 
  • Easy access storage space 
  • Ask about lawn or exterior maintenance ( for more independent individuals)  

Related: Is It Time to Move Into a Senior Living Community? 

Hire a Trusted Senior Moving Company  

Moving out of your family home and into a retirement community doesn’t have to be stressful. Whether you choose to downsize or upsize, move locally near Tampa, or from the area to be closer to caregivers, we can help!   

Florida’s Best Moving & Storage is a family-owned moving company proudly serving the Tampa Bay area. We are dedicated to helping our Senior community and will take care of your move with the utmost care and attention.  

Schedule a FREE estimate on moving or storage, please contact us today at 813-485-6580 or fill out the form below for a quote from our passionate team of senior movers.