The Right Way to Choose a Retirement Residence

By - October 22nd 2013.

Questions to consider when searching for an appropriate senior care resident

You’ve done your research and identified a handful of senior care candidates on behalf of your loved one. Now it’s time to decide which facility will ultimately provide the best level of care and community atmosphere.

In order to do this, we suggest scheduling a tour of each potential residence. During this visit, try to observe as many daily activities as you can within the home. If possible, arrange to sit in on some of the planned activities or attend a meal service. Observe staff and resident interactions – do people appear to be happy and comfortable in their surroundings? If possible:

  • Try and wander around the home on your own in order to get a better sense of the home’s atmosphere and quality of care.
  • Ask residents about their quality of life and living experience. Is there anything that they specifically dislike about the facility?
  • Does it appear as though the needs of the residents are being met?

Following your visit, ask if you could possibly drop by on another day at a different time. You may notice things the second time around that you missed during your first visit. Finally, ask if the home offers short-term trial stays. These temporary placements are an excellent way for seniors to test-drive a facility before making a final decision.

Ask for Details

Every retirement home differs in the type of services and programs that are offered. As such, it’s important to ask for additional information on these amenities. Most residences offer this in the form of a Care Home Information Package, which clearly sets out what’s included in your resident package and what amenities are available for an additional fee.

Other things to consider when looking at retirement residences include location, especially the proximity to community amenities, hospitals, churches, and retail providers. Ask about the ability of transportation for shopping trips, social outings, and off-site medical visits.

Pay close attention to the quality of the food available (are individual dietary restrictions taken into consideration?), security issues, and the overall cleanliness of the facility.

Finally, be sure to gauge the facility’s ability to meet the needs of your loved in the future. Are assisted living and memory care services available? Considering all of these options now will help ensure that your loved one is comfortable for many years to come.