What are the Pros and Cons of Independent Living for Seniors?

Learn the benefits and disadvantages of independent living arrangements for seniors.
Royalty-free image

Whether you’re getting closer to retirement age or thinking about someone close to you, you might be torn between the different housing options available. Most will see retirement homes as a last resort and might be more inclined to look at independent and semi-independent options. These do have their benefits, but they also have drawbacks you may have not thought about. The worst is that these often only start manifesting once you’ve moved in. Let’s take a look at some of the pros and cons of independent living for seniors.

Pro – Stay Independent

The first and most obvious benefit of independent living is staying independent. However, it doesn’t mean that you have to stay isolated.

You have communities that will allow you to enjoy your freedom and autonomy but still have a vibrant social circle. Some will also allow you to gradually increase the amount of assistance you need depending on your situation. This allows seniors to get all the independence that they need without having to deal with chores like cleaning, housekeeping, or strenuous home repairs and upkeep.

Con – Adjustment Time

If you’ve been living in a traditional family home, then you will need to adapt to a new life in an independent living senior community. There are also unknowns when moving to any new place. However, you have to be open-minded and at least consider the option.

One thing you could do is go for a trial stay in a few communities you feel would be a good fit for you. This will give you an idea of whether this a place you could see yourself calling home, or whether independent living is actually for you.

Pro – New Social Opportunities

One of the beauties of living in an independent living community is the community aspect of it. Nothing beats being around like-minded people and having the chance of sharing connections and experiences. You also don’t necessarily have to fraternize all the time in an independent community. You can get involved as much or as little as you want. You could also choose a community that emphasizes group activities if you want to get involved as much as possible.

Con – The Cost

However, if you decide to go that route, you have to be ready for the costs that come with it. Living in these kinds of communities can seem expensive at first glance, but you also have to factor in all the services you’re getting.

When you consider everything, you’ll realize that your monthly payments will be covering a lot of expenses you’re currently making. This is why you need to look at more than just the price tag and at what you’re getting for the money. This is again where comparing options and going for trial stays will help.

These are just some of the benefits and disadvantages of independent living arrangements for seniors. Whatever you do, make sure to get as many second opinions as you can from other people who are already living independently and do your research before you make your final decision.