Subsidized Senior Housing – 5 Tips for Securing Safe, Affordable Subsidized Senior Housing in a Down Economy

Securing safe and affordable subsidized senior housing can feel daunting. Here are five subsidized senior housing tips to help you find the right match:

1. Plan In Advance Of Senior Housing Needs

The most important tip for seniors looking for affordable subsidized senior housing is to plan in advance of your housing needs. Current homeowners who are downsizing to senior housing need to consolidate their current possessions so moving costs are reasonable. Plans should be made up to two years in advance of relocation to safe and affordable subsidized senior housing if possible. Determine the actual size of the new housing that’s needed. Then, scale back on furnishings to compensate any losses of space.

2. Be Prepared To Research Senior Housing Information

In a down economy, it’s necessary to spend adequate amount of time researching information regarding senior housing in order to find the most financially appropriate fit. This might include government-assisted housing programs as well as local or state information databanks where available. This is a very important facet of securing safe and affordable subsidized senior housing. Research will also help avoid possible financial losses. Rather than wade through volumes of paperwork, transfer all information gathered to a spreadsheet for easier comparisons and viewing. Make certain that all information is understood before making final decisions.

3. Assess and Evaluate Location and Housing Expenses

Once information about subsidized senior housing is gathered, the next step is to assess and evaluate each location and any additional expenses. For instance, determine whether utilities are included or this is an additional expense. If it’s an additional expense, check with utility companies for senior discounts that may be available. Location is important for other reasons such as proximity to hospitals, doctors, family and shopping. Another issue is transportation. Some subsidized senior housing offers senior transportation on a regular basis while others do not. Parking facilities for family, visitors and personal vehicles is another issue that may be of concern. For some seniors, even the availability of a central shared laundry room may be important. Other significant factors of importance are safe and secure facilities. Review the location carefully before making a decision.

4. Determine Financial Resources

Fortunately, seniors today can take advantage of assistance to determine their financial resources. This should be done before researching information on housing availability. The reason is that most subsidized senior housing is based upon ability to pay rent or leasing. Thus, having a thorough and complete knowledge of personal financial resources will clear away any questions that may arise. There’s another reason to review financial resources. This is the best way to determine affordability as well as maintaining vigilance over future income and cash outlays for unexpected expenses.

5. Adjusting To Lifestyle Changes

Moving out of one’s home or relocating is always an emotional upheaval at any age. For seniors, it may be especially difficult. It needn’t be if a little bit of forethought is applied to the situation. Securing safe and affordable subsidized senior housing should be viewed as a new life phase. For some seniors, familiar surroundings can be debilitating mentally and physically. Subsidized senior housing has many advantages that are designed for safety and affordability. Some offer meals and laundry services as well as recreational activities.

With subsidized senior housing options available ranging from unfurnished one bedroom apartments to assisted living facilities and nursing homes, there are many factors to consider in making the transition to subsidized senior housing as smooth and beneficial to elderly tenants as possible.

The Three Best Ways to Find Income Based Apartments for Seniors

Finding affordable housing for seniors can often be a difficult task, especially when financial resources are extremely limited. One possible avenue is to check into income based apartments for seniors that consider tenants’ income when determining the amount of the monthly rent. There are three potential resources that can provide help in locating available income based apartments for seniors, even if the focus is finding something in a small or mid-sized city.

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Local Non-Profit Organizations

One potential source for leads on income based apartments for seniors is any local organization focused on providing support services to citizens who have reached retirement age. Local councils on aging as well as watchdog agencies who specialize in protecting the rights of seniors often maintain listings of housing that will likely be in line with the senior’s income level, and provide discounts based on that level of income. These organizations may operate on a citywide level, although it is not unusual for them to cover an area as large as a country or parish. Best of all, these lists are often qualified, meaning that the organization has taken steps to verify that the apartments do meet basic standards.

City and County Agencies

Along with non-profit organizations, agencies that are directly operated by the local jurisdiction are also likely to have a list of income based housing options for seniors. Obtaining the listings usually requires making a formal request and may require meeting certain criteria in terms of income levels and any special health needs. Those qualifications help the agencies to narrow the selection to income based apartments for seniors that are equipped with ramps or other amenities that would allow senior tenants to enjoy a measure of independence.

State Resources

In many states, income based apartments for seniors may be managed under the auspices of a state department of housing or similar agency. Apartment complexes of this type may be directly owned and operated by the state, or be the property of a business that has agreed to provide housing for seniors based on income levels. The complexes may be new construction or include hospitals and other facilities that have been remodeled to create viable housing options.

Formal applications are usually required in order to be considered for one of these income based apartments for seniors, with the owner conducting background checks and taking all the precautions that apply to any prospective tenant. Along with basic financial and other information, there is a good chance that the application will also include the opportunity to provide data on any special health needs that the prospective tenant may have, such as the need for wheelchair friendly facilities with wider doors and lower cabinet tops. If the goal is to secure income based housing in an assisted care apartment complex, that request should also be provided to the agency in advance. Depending on the degree of demand in the area, it may be necessary to be placed on a waiting list until a unit becomes available.

The goal is to find the right housing situation for the senior tenant. Doing so will mean spending some time and effort in visiting and qualifying possible options based on factors as the proximity to loved ones, general conditions of the neighborhood, and the specific health needs of the loved one. By making it a point to make use of every available resource to find the right type of housing at the right price, the chances of finding an income based apartment that the senior will enjoy are greatly enhanced.

Announcing the Senior Housing Guide and Senior Housing Trends Infographic

For many seniors and their family members, the choices for senior citizen housing can be overwhelming. From aging in place with the assistance of caregivers in independent living communities or senior assisted living facilities, to more extensive care giving options for seniors with higher levels of acuity like memory care centers and skilled nursing facilities, there are a range of options and its difficult to know which solution is right for you or your family member.

With that in mind, we’ve put together our new Senior Housing Guide, which is a comprehensive resource on all the senior housing options available and will provide you with the information you need to make an educated decision on the right senior living option for your loved one.

To see the guide, go to Senior Housing Guide

We’ve also embedded an infographic in the guide that illustrates the current trends in senior housing, including what they are and how they’re changing the face of senior citizen housing.

Here’s a sneak preview of the infographic.

trends in senior citizen housing infographic

To see the entire infographic and share it with others, go to Senior Housing Trends Infographic

 

Choosing the Best Senior Care Center: 10 Questions to Ask

Making the decision to transition from your home to an assisted living facility can be difficult. There will surely be questions and concerns when trying to decide on the right senior care facilities for you. Knowledge is power! Figuring out the right questions to ask when visiting your potential new home can help you make the best choice. You will want the move into a senior care center to be as easy and stress free as possible for you and your family.

What are the standard assisted living services provided?

Find out exactly what living at a senior care center will consist of. Things like housekeeping and laundry services are typically available, as well as access to health and medical services. Inquire as to what a typical staff member is available to help with if needed and what senior care service can be provided if asked for.

Does this senior care facility feel comfortable?

Does the center feel homey and warm? Are you able to personalize your own space? Look around at other residents of the home, do they seem happy and comfortable? Observe if the staff seems friendly and accommodating.

Is the facility in compliance with state regulations and licenses?

Ask if everything is up to code and if there has been a recent inspection. It would also be helpful to check with the Better Business Bureau for complaints that have been filed, if any.

What’s the cost?

Find out all living costs for the billing cycle. It would also be a good idea to know how and when the facility bills. Check to see if insurance is accepted and if so, make the necessary calls to the insurance company.

Are there additional costs for extra activities or outings?

You will want to know if, besides the monthly cost, there will be any additional costs for extra activities. Knowing this up-front will prevent problems and surprise costs when the monthly bill comes in.

Are hobbies and activities that you are interested in offered?

Keeping the mind active is always a benefit. Finding an assisted living facility with activities, hobbies and groups that you enjoy will make your new home enjoyable and comfortable, all while making new friends.

How’s the food?

It may seem like an afterthought, but the menu will part of your everyday life. Find out the quality and variety of the menu. Will there be alternatives to the scheduled meals and will all dietary restrictions be accommodated?

Can you make calls, have visitors, and go on outings?

Find out what the rules for phone calls and visitations are. Knowing which facility’s rules best accommodate you will make choosing a new home much easier. Also inquire about outings with family and what the rules are regarding those.

How are non-emergency medical concerns addressed?

You will want to know how concerns, such as medications and check-ups, are addressed. Ask how medications are given out daily. Find out if you will continue to see your current physician or if there is a physician on staff who will take over your routine appointments.

What are the procedures for an emergency?

Should an emergency arise, the last thing you or your family would want to wonder is what happens now? Go over what the emergency procedures are when you speak with a representative from the facility. Ask questions about the standard procedures regarding fires and also medical emergencies. You will want to make sure family will be contacted immediately should there be an emergency.

Life in an assisted living facility is an undeniable adjustment. This can feel stressful in the beginning. But asking the right questions will hopefully calm your fears and anxiety and make the transition much easier.

For Information on Assisted Living and Care Homes:

5 Key Benefits of Assisted vs. Unassisted Senior Home Living

Continued growth in the elderly population, and the chronic diseases strongly associated with aging, is an inevitable byproduct of modern healthcare systems. The conventional choice for long-term care of the elderly, especially those experiencing a loss of self-efficacy due to disease, has been the nursing home. These facilities carry a lot of stigma though, both for their elderly clients and the family, as well as seemingly regular reports of abuse and neglect.

Fortunately, there is an alternative for senior citizen care. Both designated communities and assisted care options exist, and both offer a number of benefits over the nursing home. The singular quality they share is in allowing the person to continue living as independently and privately as their abilities and health status allow.

 

  1. Assisted Living Homes Increase Quality of Life
    Minimizing intervention is an important factor to increasing self-efficacy and quality of life for elderly citizens. An individual may still be able to perform most daily chores, and assisted living specialists recognize this. Instead of relinquishing their homes, possessions, privacy, and independence, assisted care only picks up those chores that can no longer be handled safely or appropriately. This could be as simple as reminders of what medications to take or providing transportation to the doctor’s office and other routine stops.

 

  1. A Senior Living Community Provides Social and Recreational Opportunities
    One of the sad facts of growing older is losing the contacts built over a lifetime. Old friends pass away or move and this can lead to a more secluded lifestyle. It is a well-known fact that having a socially rich life is an important part of promoting good health and positive emotions.

 

Assisted living communities provide public spaces for meeting others with similar interests. There are also organizers on duty to help with arranging events and outings that can be enjoyed by everyone. Whether it is tea time, a game of chess in the park, or a trip to the ballot box in November, life takes on more meaning when shared with others.

 

  1. An Assisted Living Residence is Designed to Minimize Hazards
    Specialists in elderly care are trained to pay attention to the environment. Just as the parents of a newborn have to take precautions to ensure their child’s safety, so too must modifications be made to minimize the hazards faced by the elderly. Adding important appliances, like shower grab bars, remote panic buttons, and many others most of us rarely consider, can make it much easier for an elderly person to continue living independently, while minimizing the need for outside interventions.

 

  1. Senior Home Living Means Rapid Response to Emergency Situations
    Even with modifications, accidents happen. Having access to trained personnel at all times can mean the difference between a small fracture and a life-threatening event. As well, intermittent visits to a doctor or with family can be inadequate for spotting a gradually developing health issue. In a community setting, problems can be noticed and addressed more quickly. In any case, fast response translates into a better chance of overcoming difficulties.

 

  1. Senior Living Homes are Adaptable to the Individual’s Needs
    Perhaps the signature quality of assisted care, which makes it a better choice than a nursing home, is in its adaptability to the individual’s needs. An elderly person with less mobility requires a different set of support than someone who is having trouble remembering details, like how much salt to use in a recipe, or when they last watered the garden. Instead of losing all independence and privacy, senior living homes make it possible to provide just the support needed for each person.

For Information on Nursing Homes and Assisted Living:

Nursing Home Closures: The Elderly Population is Exploding, Yet Nursing Homes are Closing

Today, we’ve launched our first infographic at Assisted Living Today. It’s a visually compelling graphic that covers the rash of nursing home closures that have been occurring since 2008 across the United States. Even in the face of a ballooning Boomer and elderly population, nursing homes are closing, and minority areas are feeling the brunt of it. If you’d like share this infographic with others, use the social sharing icons on the left. You can also embed it by clicking on the link below and grabbing the HTML code.

See the Nursing Home Closures Infographic Here

Nursing Home Closures Infographic

For Information on Nursing Homes and Assisted Living: