Senior Living: Why Planning Ahead Is A Smart Choice

By on November 20, 2012

We have all heard the saying, “respect your elders.” Respect them by preparing them for long-term care. The fear of not getting the care one need can become a huge burden on the whole family. Now is the time to act and plan accordingly for your or your loved ones future care. Senior living community occupancy rates have increased to a concerning level. Having a plan will allow you to visit your concerns and set the right expectations when you choose assisted living or senior living communities.

Planning for long-term care
The current statistic of long term care is 7 out of 10 Americans over the age of 65 will require long-term care. Long term care can be frightening because there is an increased fear of burdening the family with bills after death. This is why there is a necessity for education of planning for long-term care. Luckily, the AARP has released and initiative in 2010 that properly educates seniors and their families how to plan for long-term care. This campaign is called Decide.Create.Share, which initially started as a four session program in select communities. The initial program resulted in the participant’s ability to define and comprehend long term care, what they will need to consider in the future, how much they will receive from social security post retirement, and whether or not they would benefit from purchasing long-term care insurance.  They went a step further and checked if their home contained safety risks, whether a family member completed a health care power of attorney, and promoted exercise on a daily basis.

It’s Time to be Proactive
The occupancy rates in senior living communities has risen over the past couple of years, leaving limited spots in reputable senior living homes. If you have a loved one that is either thinking about or approaching the decision of entering long-term care, now is the time to be proactive.  Wouldn’t you want the best chance of adequate care for yourself or your loved one? According to a report in 2010 from the National Investment Centers for the Seniors Housing & Care Industry, senior living occupancy has risen and reached 87.7% overall.  The demand is growing at a rate of 7,000 units annually, according to the vice president of the National Investment Centers Market Area Profiles service, Michael Hargrave. In 2012, the nursing care occupancy rate had a minimal but significant rise to 88%. These statistics should act as a wakeup call if you were contemplating the future of your or a family members long term care.

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Phil Bosco is a part of an elite team of writers who have contributed to hundreds of blogs and news sites. Follow him @philthomastalk.

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