What Do Seniors Want In A Retirement Community?

Every person has their “musts” when it comes to choosing a senior retirement community. Then there are the deal breakers that just won’t do. There are plenty of pros, cons, and compromises to consider carefully, so the steps towards selecting a retirement community should be taken seriously.

Are you seeking a retirement community for yourself or a loved one? If so, and you are not quite sure what to look for, these common items can guide you along this path. It takes some patience and persistence, but the outcome will be well worth the effort.

1. Caring And Attentive Staff

A well-run retirement community has an above-board staff that never cuts corners and always over-delivers. One of the main reasons people move into a retirement community is for the assistance. That’s why a well-established and highly-trained staff is a must.

Visiting the retirement communities you are interested in will give you an up-close view of how the staff is managed. Of course, you will appreciate the friendliness and a welcoming feeling, but it goes much deeper than that. The staff should truly care about the people they are tending to and how well they do their jobs. “Going through the motions” just won’t cut it. People are paying for service, comfort, and peace of mind. When staff members are on the ball and put forth their best efforts, it shows. Compassion and professionalism mean everything.

Speak to people who reside in the retirement community you are interested in and get their take on how well the staff is handling things. Do not be shy about asking questions and voicing your understandable concerns. Living in a new place is challenging at the start, and an A+ staff will make the transition run more smoothly. They will be around 24/7 for your needs and care during your stay, so you want to be able to trust them completely and rely on them when needed.

2. Affordability

Everyone has their budget, and while some seniors must look for a retirement community that’s on the lower end, price-wise, others have lots of savings and can afford more expensive options. No matter where you fall along the spectrum, there is an appropriate retirement community that will suit your needs within your specific budget.

If you have been saving for decades for this major move or you have a fixed retirement stipend to depend upon, don’t choose a retirement community that is outside your budget. You never know what may come up, so keep that cushion for unexpected emergencies and other needs. Even if you have grown children or other family members who may be able to help out, you never know what may happen down the road. Play it safe, save your money wisely, and don’t go all out without considering unforeseen circumstances. You’ll thank yourself later.

While it’s normal to be concerned about affordability; finding a retirement home that is rent-controlled and will try to work within your budget like our community here at Holiday Villa East can also be very helpful.

3. Proximity

Many seniors move out of state when considering a retirement community, but there are those who would prefer to stay in the same vicinity where they already reside, be it to be close to their children and grandchildren, longtime friends, or they just happen to enjoy their city and don’t want to move.

Obviously, if there are no retirement communities nearby, moving will be a must. Make sure this is fine for you and your loved ones. You won’t want to live too far away if it is important for you to be close to your family and friends. Traveling back and forth can be challenging and costly and you will likely see them far less often than you would like to. Not to say you won’t meet new people at your new home, but they can never replace your longtime friends and beloved family members.

If environment is important to you; consider researching retirement communities in warmer climates like California. With local attractions, medical centers, and amazing weather California can be a great option for a place to retire.

4. Upkeep

Not every retirement community is super modern or brand new, but that doesn’t mean the upkeep should be subpar. Cleanliness is crucial, and everything ought to be in fine working order, from the washing machines to the exercise room.

Be sure the facility you select is up to speed on upkeep, be it the condition of the living quarters or the maintenance of the grounds. Anything that seems messy, smelly, out of order or cluttered should be considered a red flag. There’s no reason a retirement community should be neglected in any way.

With an appropriate cleaning crew, maintenance people, and good management, a retirement community should run smoothly with no reason to doubt its integrity. Don’t skimp on this aspect of community living – it’s a must.

5. Safety

Seniors can be vulnerable to crimes and other unsavory situations when the safety of the facility is compromised in any fashion. A well-run retirement community should be safe with protective measures in place, such as alarms, gates, and visitor management.

These measures ensure the utmost protection and peace of mind of the residents, as well as their families who may be worried about their welfare when they’re not around. Be sure to ask about the safety measures in place in the communities you are interested in. If they do not have the level of security you are 100% comfortable with, pass on that place and seek out another facility that is up to your standards.

In addition to making sure the environment is safe, safety within the community is also important. Your retirement facility should be equipped with precautions that help keep residents safe and avoid injuries.

6. Activities And Amenities

Part of the luxury of living in a retirement facility is the extras. Seniors do not want to sit in their rooms all day staring at the wall. Most retirement communities have plenty to do, such as exercise, Yoga, Tai-Chi and art classes, entertainment, board games educational courses, and more. The more to do, the better.

If you are a senior who wants to have some fun and entertainment where you live, research your options, and find a retirement community with plenty to do each day. You will never feel lonely or bored when there is a calendar full of exciting events to participate in.

7. Transportation

For seniors who do not drive or have someone to take them into town for shopping, local sightseeing, or to see family, it is important that the retirement community they move into offers transportation.

Many offer shuttles to take the residents to the grocery store or mall a few times per day. If this is something you will require, be sure to find out if the place you are interested in offers such a service. Without it, you will be stranded, or wind up paying plenty for cabs each week.

Finding The Right Retirement Community For You

Now that you know what to look for and what preferences to add to your checklist, you’re ready to find the ideal retirement community for you. If you are looking for a facility that can take care of your needs and wants Holiday Villa East can help.

We offer the comfort, safety, and excitement of an affordable independent senior living community in fabulous, sunny Santa Monica with access to a host of lifestyle support and 24-hour assistance services. 

Give us a call, send an e-mail, or come on by to take a tour of our facility and meet our residents. We’re here for you, offering you the very best in senior retirement living.

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