Independent Living communities offer retirees a truly carefree lifestyle, but not all of them are created equal. That’s why we suggest that you tour several before choosing the one that fits best. Before touring Independent Living communities here are some of the most important things to look for and questions to ask.
Just like when choosing any new home, first impressions begin with curb appeal. Top luxury Independent Living communities look like resorts with beautifully landscaped and manicured grounds, clean and appealing courtyards and common areas and an overall feeling of upscale living.
If parking lots are full of potholes, plants and shrubs are overgrown and gardens in need of weeding, this should be a red flag that the community at large isn’t well maintained. Take a look at some of the Thrive Senior Living communities for what to expect from the best.
When touring Independent Living communities, the first thing to look for indoors is overall cleanliness. Are floors, walls and windows in the common areas clean? Is the furniture well maintained? Does every area of the building smell good? When moving through the common areas look for signs that upkeep and maintenance are ongoing such as team members sweeping or otherwise cleaning. Check places like fitness centers, dining rooms and other common areas for signs of good housekeeping practices that show the community is always in good order.
When viewing available apartments, don’t hesitate to look for signs that every inch of the place has been thoroughly cleaned, from sinks to the stove to windowsills to countertops to patios to balconies. High-end Independent Living communities like Thrive Senior Living set the bar higher so don’t settle for less than the best. Learn more in our blog, “What to Expect in an Independent Living Community.”
One of the greatest benefits of Independent Living is the fact that it’s a community of friends and peers who share common memories and aspirations. When touring Independent Living communities look for signs that socialization is a priority like groups of residents enjoying activities and events and team members who are engaged with residents in a friendly and helpful manner. To get a feel for the spirit of a community, ask about ways residents can spend time together like clubs, social events, outings and other planned activities. Also ask if there are places to enjoy hobbies like gardening, games, and reading, or ways to experience local venues like museums or festivals with new friends. You can even ask to attend an activity or event to truly get a feel for the place. To learn more about the importance of socialization, read our blog, “In With the In Crowd: The Benefits of Socialization for Older Adults.”
Another area to discover when touring Independent Living communities is the emphasis on physical and mental wellness. Staying active and healthy in body and mind is what Independent Living should be all about so look for amenities like state-of-the art fitness centers with trained team members, meditative options like yoga and Tai Chi, well-maintained outdoor spaces where residents can get exercise or just spend time in nature, and quiet places for pursuing personal fulfillment. It’s all about options!
One of the most appreciated improvements in senior living is the switch from poor-to-mediocre meals to chef-inspired menus that rival top restaurants for presentation, flavor and nutrition. When touring Independent Living communities keep a lookout for dining options that include full-service formal dining rooms with table linens as well as other options like bistros or cafes offering excellent casual dining, snacks and beverages. For the ultimate test, arrange to enjoy a meal when touring Independent Living communities and ask if everything is prepared fresh daily and if special dietary needs can be accommodated. For more about making the perfect choice check out our blog, “I Want Answers! 8 Essential Questions to Ask When Choosing a Senior Living Community.”
In addition to all of the above, when touring Independent Living communities also be sure to inquire about value-added services. These include things like housekeeping and linen services, around-the-clock security, accessibility and safety features throughout the community, onsite hair salons and barbershops, movie theaters, and whether pets are welcome. All are the norm in luxury Independent Living so if they aren’t available it might be best to keep looking!
Considering your funding options for moving to an Independent Living community? Download our free guide, “Family Guide to Paying for Senior Living.” Contact us to learn more about Thrive Senior Living and schedule your tour today!