Finding a retirement home is not always easy. This is the case whether it’s for you or someone close to you. Retirement homes have big differences between each other and have different approaches. Some will allow you to live a fulfilled and active life with people you get along with and great staff who love what they’re doing. Go with the wrong one, and you could be dealing with everything from neglect to abuse. This is why it is something you can’t afford to take lightly. Here are some of the things you should consider when picking a retirement home.
The Track Record and Reputation
The very first thing you have to do is make sure that you check their reputation. You want to know how long they’ve been established for and what other people had to say about them. Try to check as many reviews about them as possible. Check if you can find any stories of abuse related to them.
How Does it Fit with Your Lifestyle?
You also have to see if the retirement home fits your lifestyle. Some are geared towards younger retirees and focus more on autonomy. Others will be more structured and have a mix of indoor and outdoor activities. You have to make sure that the community you choose is aligned with your needs and that you’ll be with likeminded people.
But for that, you have to know if there will be a feeling of community to begin with. Retirement homes like Brandywine Living are a perfect example of a retirement home that takes community spirit seriously. It’s ingrained in everything they do, and the staff do everything to make the residents feel secure and included. They also have beautiful facilities and scheduled activities to keep you active and engaged, which is also something you should be looking for.
Can They Cater to Your Needs?
Another thing you have to do is check if they can help with any special needs you may have now or in the future. If you have mobility issues, you need to take a tour of the facility and see if you can navigate it easily. Check the rooms and the bathrooms. You may also need to have your doctor come in and treat you on site, so you need to know if that’s possible.
You also have to know how they deal with dietary restrictions, and don’t just take their word for it either; ask to see the kitchen and see how the meals are made. You may have trouble finding options if you have religious restrictions, for instance, or if you’re vegan. These are all very important things you’ll have to consider.
You don’t only want to make sure that they respect your restrictions, but you have to get an idea of what level of quality you can expect. Some retirement homes will have much more strict rules for eating and less extensive menus. You also want to know what type of formation the chef had.
In some cases, retirement homes will allow you to eat on your own time or have the food delivered to your room. In other cases, you will have to eat at certain times in a dedicated area. Some may like it while others may want to have more freedom, so that’s something you should know before you make your choice.
Location is also very important. There are many things you’ll need to look at here. The first one is accessibility. Some people would prefer staying in the city while others would rather stay in the outskirts.
If you want people to be able to visit, you have to make things as easy as possible for them. So, this is something you’ll have to consider. The closer you are to your friends and family, the more often you can expect to see them. You also want to pick a location that will be close enough to all the services you need.
Your First Impression
Sometimes, you have to listen to your gut. Once you have a few potential homes on your list, make sure to visit them and see what kind of first impression you get from them.
Check how well you’re received. Look at how well maintained the building is. Check the level of hygiene as well. Are you greeted with smiles by reception and staff? Do they seem genuinely happy to be there?
These are all things you should be able to pick up on during your first visits and this will help you to see if you’ll feel comfortable there. You should also go to the communal areas if you can and see if you might mesh with the people there. If you’re already making friends, then that could be a good sign.
You should also check out what kind of wellness services they have to offer or if they even have a wellness program. You might also want to know whether they have a counselor or if they can offer access to one. Additionally, is having a gym or fitness/yoga classes important to you? These are all things that can make a big difference, especially if you like to stay in shape but don’t want to have to commute.
Instead of asking what activities they put on, try to visit when they’re holding them. This will give you an idea of the ambiance. You should also check if the residents seem to actually enjoy themselves. Go with a home that has a diverse set of activities. You want a mix of spiritual, physical, and social activities. Some will have activities for the retirees and their families as well.
Last, but not least, you have to make sure that you’ll feel safe. You want to see what type of security staff they have on-site as well as how they limit and control access. You also want to know who will be there and who you can reach if you need help at any time of the day.
These are all important things you’ll need to take into consideration when picking a retirement home. Make sure that you look at all of these factors and take your time before you make your final choice.