- Definitions -

Independent/Retirement Living communities provide independent seniors an active apartment style living environment. Apartment types include studio, 1 bedroom or 2 bedroom units with full kitchens. Most retirement communities offer 1-2 meals a day in a dining room or restaurant style setting, weekly housekeeping, social activities and transportation to shopping and doctor appointments.
 
Payment Options: Mostly Private Pay; Some Government Funded
Average Monthly Costs: $850-$4000+

Assisted Living communities provide a residential setting for seniors to live safely. They offer assistance with medication reminders, bathing, dressing and special dietary requirements. Amenities typically include three meals a day, social activities, transportation, housekeeping and laundry. Most living areas offer walk in showers, wide doors for wheelchair access, emergency call services and more. Many assisted livings also offer specialized Alzheimer’s/Dementia Care. They may be stand alone communities or part of a continuing care retirement community. (CCRC)

Payment Options: Mostly Private Pay; Some Accept Subsidies
Average Monthly Costs: $2000-$8000+

Nursing Homes are designed for seniors who require medical attention 24/7 and rehabilitation services in a hospital like setting. Typical services involve managing complex medical problems such as infections, wound care, IV therapy and coma care. Most facilities offer short term and long term care options. They may be stand alone facilities or part of a retirement community.

Payment Options: Private Pay; Medicaid; Medicare
Average Monthly Costs: $5000-$12000+

Continuing Care Retirement Communities provide a range of support for changing health needs. Normally one enters the community independent with assurance of a lifetime guarantee for shelter and access to continual health care services. The philosophy of CCRC's is to allow individuals to age in place in exchange for the lifelong guarantee, CCRC's usually require a large "up front" entrance fee and then ongoing monthly maintenance fees.  Each CCRC offers three basic types of contracts.  It is advisable to seek legal counsel prior to entering a contract as they are legally binding.

Payment Options: Private Pay; Medicaid; Medicare
Entrance Fee:  $48,000-$1,000,000+
Average Monthly Costs: $2500-$7000+

Alzheimer’s/Dementia Care communities are designed with the memory impaired or Alzheimer’s resident in mind. The environment is secured allowing residents to explore and wander safely. The staff is typically well trained and more experienced in working with memory loss and Alzheimer’s care. They may be stand alone communities or part of an assisted living community.
 
Payment Options: Mostly Private Pay; Some Accept Subsidies
Average Monthly Costs: $5000-$8000​+