Senior living opens the door to a more exciting, engaged lifestyle with less stress. If you’re considering senior living options, you probably already know about the many benefits, from maintenance-free living to more opportunities to make friends and indulge in interests.
But financial worries loom large for most older adults. One survey found that 80% lack the financial means to pay for long-term care or manage a financial crisis. Perhaps you’re hesitant to move because you’re worried about potential costs.
You’re not alone. Many older adults are excited about senior living but worry that they can’t afford it. One common error is to tally up all the benefits — home maintenance, support with activities of daily living if needed, enrichment, and meals — and assume you’ll pay the same sum you would pay for these services at home. Senior living pricing, though, bundles services so you can save money. You may even find that it could be cheaper than living at home.
Every situation is different, but here are some factors to consider as you weigh your senior living options.
Average Cost of Senior Living: Value vs. Expense
How much does senior living cost? That depends on the community you choose, where you live, and the services you select. Just as the cost of homeownership varies from home to home, the cost of senior living depends on what you buy.
As you explore your options, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by a large price tag. Remember, though, that the “bundling” of senior-living costs can replace many monthly expenses. That’s an immense value that can measurably improve your quality of life.
Some of the many benefits you’ll gain include:
- Support when you need and want it, helping you remain independent
- A low-stress, maintenance-free lifestyle that empowers you to focus on the things that matter most to you
- A calendar full of events and programming to enjoy with a community of welcoming and friendly people
- A focus on holistic well-being with walkable paths, active friends, delicious meals, and an environment that supports you to live life on your own terms
How Senior Living Could Save You Money
Senior living communities offer all-in-one pricing. Pay for all or most of your monthly needs in a single bill. This lends predictability to your budget and may mean you spend less on the services you use the most.
A senior living community could replace or reduce many expenses, including:
- Your rent or mortgage
- All home maintenance and landscaping costs
- Dining out
- Entertainment expenses
- Caregiving expenses, such as a home health aide
- Cleaning services
- Gym membership
- Salon or spa fees
Funding the Costs of Senior Living
The most important question is not how much senior living costs but whether you can afford it. You might know how much you have in savings or know roughly what your budget is, but you can’t be certain whether senior living is affordable for you until you understand all of your options for paying for it.
For most adults, selling a home provides more than enough to fund the costs of senior living. Most people who move to senior living communities use the proceeds of their home sale to cover their entry fee, monthly service fees, and more.
Insurance may also help cover your costs. For example, state Medicaid programs offer assistance in certain circumstances for home- and community-based services through the Elderly Waiver.
You may also receive some tax benefits for assisted living that help to decrease the price further.
Ready to see whether senior living fits into your budget? Our cost calculator can help.