Moving to a retirement community can be a difficult process for seniors. With so many senior living options out there, how do you know you’re selecting a community that will fit your unique needs while still being comfortable, affordable, and fun? And once you’ve selected your ideal community, how do you undergo the process of downsizing and moving in?
Don’t let the process overwhelm you! This checklist will help you throughout the process, from selecting a community to navigating moving day.
How to Prepare for a Retirement Community: Your Checklist
Health and Wellness. There are many different senior living options out there, and the one you choose will depend on your ability to care for yourself. Undergoing a health evaluation before you choose a retirement community will help you to pick the right level of care for you.
- Independent Living. Briarwood offers several independent living options, including apartments and cottages.
- Assisted Living. For those who require more help with everyday tasks, Briarwood offers assisted living apartments.
- Nursing Home. For seniors recovering from an illness or requiring a higher level of care, a senior nursing center may be the best option. While Briarwood does not offer this option, we partner with Knollwood Nursing Center.
Finances. Before you begin your search, it pays (literally) to understand your finances and your payment options.
- What can you afford out of pocket?
- What payment options are available to you?
- Can you get help from Medicaid? Does the community you’re looking at accept Medicaid?
- What services and amenities are included in the cost? A more expensive community might be worth it if you receive more services!
Downsizing. It’s not easy to pare down a lifetime of belongings and move into a new home. It’s helpful to start downsizing early—you may even choose to begin the process before it’s time to move.
- Know Your Space. Have you already selected your retirement home? Knowing the space that will be available to you will affect which things you decide to take with you.
- Involve the Family. Keep your children and other family members in on the process! They can help you decide what to keep or give away, making some of the tough decisions easier.
- Involve a Moving Service. Need a little help? A professional senior moving service can help you make the tough decisions, pack up, and move to your new home. Whether or not you need one will depend on your unique situation.
Researching Retirement Communities. This is not a spur-of-the-moment decision, so don’t treat it like one! There are lots of factors that go into finding your ideal fit.
- Services. What do they offer? Shoveling, groundskeeping, and maintenance are a few big ones you might need or want, but what about vacuuming or dusting? Know what you need and what they offer.
- The Residences. Where would you be living? Apartment, independent home, or something else? Will it be private? What amenities are included?
- Dining Options. Is there a dining room? How many meals are served per day—and what is the food like?
- Location. What is the retirement home close to? The theatre, restaurants, places of worship?
- Activities. What activities are offered at the retirement community? Classes, group meetings, movies, and presentations all might be available!
Finding Your Perfect Fit. Once you’ve done your research, you’ll want to actually visit the communities you’re considering.
- Request/Schedule Tours. Each retirement community is different, so the process of requesting a tour may vary. Check their website or give them a call to find a time that you can go visit the campus.
- Tour the Facilities! Time to go visit! Bring a loved one who has your best interests in mind. See the facilities, meet the staff, and talk to residents. And don’t forget to try the food! If you don’t have time for a personalized tour, attend an open house or other event.
- Decision Time. Keep a list of all the facilities you tour. Take notes if you can—this will make the final decision easier! Together with your family member, weigh the pros and cons of each facility to find the right fit for you.
Find Your New Home at Briarwood
If you’re looking for a close-knit retirement community where you can explore new interests, meet new people, and enjoy your retirement to the fullest, Briarwood might be the place for you. Are you ready to find out?
We’ll be happy to give you a tour of our facilities, introduce you to our staff and residents, and treat you to a meal in our dining room. Schedule your tour today to see if Briarwood is the new home you’re looking for!