There is no “one-size-fits-all” answer to the question of where our parents want to (or can) live. Some parents who are active want to live in the home where they have lived most of their lives, while others want to move to a community where they can be around others of the same age who also want to live an active lifestyle. Some would like to continue to live on their own but can’t seem to manage without some help. Others are more limited by finances and feel like their choices are minimal.
Currently, 93% of adults 65 and over (Medicare enrollees) live in traditional communities – neighborhoods and rural communities – as opposed to senior housing developments. About 3% live in community housing with services, and 4% live in long term care facilities. Those percentages differ as people age, but even among the oldest (85 and over) 78% still live in a traditional community. As you can imagine, 90% of older people prefer to live in their own home, even if they need daily assistance or health care, which is known as aging in place. But with the growth of housing choices, aging in place has expanded to include all kinds of housing – from the family home to active adult communities to continuing care retirement communities. Be aware that each type of community may be known by multiple different names.
Wherever your parents live there are a number of strategies and services that can help them live as independently as possible or get the medical or personal care that they may need. We will look at these home and community-based services and resources for securing these for your parents.
When you are trying to figure out the cost of housing and care for your parents, we recommend that you use the Genworth Financial Cost of Care Calculator to get a realistic estimate of costs in your area.
“The goal is to find the balance of housing and care that offers the right
environmental, emotional, and economic fit.”
(Henry Cisneros, Independent for Life)