Nursing home vs retirement home? Stay at home or move to a retirement community? These are some of the numerous questions that go through a retiree’s mind. After all, it’s no longer news that choosing where to spend one’s retirement is a significant decision.
Unfortunately, the abundance of living options does not make this decision-making process any easier for older adults. However, knowing what these senior living alternatives offer and how they fit your loved one’s needs is a great way to start.
You can explore the care options at Seasons Retirement, a community with some of the best retirement homes in Ontario. They offer different living options, including independent living, independent supportive living, assisted living, and memory care.
This piece compares the advantages and disadvantages of living at home and moving into a retirement community. But, before we begin comparing, let us look at what each of these living arrangements entails.
What Does It Mean to ‘Live at Home’?
Simply referred to as ‘aging in place,’ it involves an older adult staying in their privately-owned residence. Although many people may worry about their loved ones’ well-being if they choose to enjoy their retirement alone at home, this living arrangement has certain advantages for older folks.
Independence, a comfortable lifestyle, proximity to friends & relatives, and reduced health risks are a few benefits that older adults enjoy while living at home. However, this living option also comes with downsides, some of which will be discussed in this article.
What is a Retirement Home?
In simple terms, a retirement home is a community where older folks live. It is typically a campus-like community with various residences that suit several individuals’ different tastes and needs. Also, this living arrangement provides additional care amenities such as dining halls, gym facilities, and so on.
In most retirement homes, a variety of living options – independent living, assisted living, independent assisted living, and memory care – are available to the residents, and each option offers unique care services.
A retirement home provides various benefits, including socialization opportunities, supervised care, and comfort.
Pros and Cons of Living At Home vs Moving to a Retirement Home
Having established what these two senior living options offer, we will look at how they compare under the following topics.
Cost is an essential factor to consider when deciding whether to stay at home or move to an adult living community. Before moving into a retirement home, your loved one should balance the cost of moving versus the cost of living at home.
On the surface, living at home may appear less expensive than moving to a retirement community. However, if you consider adding specialized care – typically provided in a retirement home – to living at home, you will realize that moving to senior living might be a wise financial decision.
Furthermore, virtually everything your older one needs in a retirement home is covered by a single payment, either weekly or monthly. On the other hand, living at home comes with additional and ongoing costs such as home maintenance, laundry, care services, and so on.
2. Age Homogeneity
Your loved ones can meet and socialize with people of all ages – from little children to other older people in a regular community. Conversely, a senior living community offers older adults an opportunity to forge social connections with mostly people about the same age.
However, this is not to say your parents and grandparents won’t meet younger folks in their retirement community. After all, a large portion of the home staff and visitors are usually younger adults. Some retirement homes even intentionally try to establish a community that is diverse in age.
While some older adults like living with individuals in their age group, other folks do not appreciate it. But, regardless of your loved one’s preference, they will always find a living arrangement that caters to all their social needs and taste.
3. Community and Isolation
A significant downside of staying at home after retirement is loneliness. Older folks who live alone are more likely to become bored very easily. On the other hand, in a senior community living, older adults enjoy other people’s company – even the staff are responsible for checking on and caring for them.
Furthermore, retirement residences offer various socialization opportunities to older adults. Your loved one can meet like-minded individuals in retirement homes while participating in exciting group activities like dancing classes, walking clubs, knitting clubs, etc.
Retirement homes provide a warm and welcoming environment that your older one can call home while interacting with people from different walks of life. Meanwhile, this housing option often provides regular, healthful meals, supervision on medication use, and specialized medical care.
4. Healthcare Risks and Benefits
A 2003 research study found that the spread of infectious diseases is common in nursing homes – and retirement communities by extension – due to residents sharing a lot of resources.
Accessing medical care is easy for older folks in retirement homes, as medical professionals visit their residences to address any health concerns. So, outbreaks are promptly and properly managed in the community.
When staying at home, there is a reduced risk of contracting an infection. Meanwhile, some regular communities offer quality healthcare, especially to older folks. So, whenever there is a health concern, your loved ones can enjoy excellent medical care in their houses.
5. Peace of Mind
After retiring, older folks want to enjoy a stress-free and fun-filled life, and they deserve to. Although your loved one can enjoy their peace of mind both in a private home and a retirement residence, the latter is a safer option.
In a retirement home, your parents and grandparents won’t have to worry about home repairs, maintenance, housekeeping, etc. Senior living communities like Seasons Retirement offer an enabling environment for older adults to live a pleasurable post-retirement life.
Moving into a retirement home isn’t so easy and straightforward. It is a change that requires weeks of planning. However, a few weeks after the transition, your older one will realize that it was worth it, especially if it’s a lovely community like Season Retirement.
The same goes for living at home. If adequate modifications are made to your older one’s home, it will make a perfect place for an enjoyable post-retirement life.
Getting the right information about the different senior living arrangements is essential to choosing a suitable option, and reading this article is an excellent way to do so.