Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) are facilities or groups of facilities that provide several ‘”levels of care” for seniors. This typically includes:
- Independent Living
- Assisted Living
- Nursing Home
- Hospice Care
Continuing care is an excellent option for many seniors because it allows them live in one community throughout their retirement. The residents can move from one facility (or part of the community) to another based on their current health condition. These facilities target seniors who are making plans for themselves (usually not planned by caregivers) and they are making long-term plans.
Long Term Planning
If you are making long-term plans that includes a backup plan for changes in your health, a CCRC is a great option. You can move in and establish an active and healthy lifestyle surrounding by other active seniors. You can make friends and enjoy an active senior life style. Then when your health changes and you need help with daily activities, you don’t need to move away from your comfort zone. You simple move to another part of the community, maintaining as much stability as possible.
Another big advantage of CCRC is that they are great for couples. Typically, at some point, one half of a couple has a change in health that requires additional support. Continuing care facilities allow the couple to stay together even while one member receives short or long-term care. They can still eat in the same areas and participate in the same activities, they may even have “assisted living type services” in their independent living home. If you are an active senior couple who wants to be prepared for any situation, then a CCRC is a great option.
The Down Sides
One down side to Continuous Care Retirement Communities is the cost. Like many independent living center, they may require a huge down payment, over $100,000 in some cases. Many seniors feel that continuity and security are worth the cost.
The second down side is that CCRC are always large. The investment required to create a community of this type can only be done by large corporations. This means that the level of “personal” service may be less than in smaller, more intimate facilities. This down side is usually offset by the abundance of activities available in larger communities. These activities help senior continue to live an active, social and fun life-style throughout their retirement.
Continuous Care Communities are not for everyone but they are a great senior living option that is ideal for some seniors who can afford it and want to plan for every stage of their retirement.