Older adults who move out of their homes and into an independent senior living community often find they are both more active and social once they get settled in at their new residence. However, the decision to move into a senior living community can understandably feel like a pretty big change—both physically and emotionally.
Thankfully, your parent doesn’t have to make the decision about whether to move to independent living on their own. In this article, we’re going to cover some questions for adult children to ask their parents to help determine if independent living is right for them. While we understand this may be a difficult subject to broach, there are some simple ways you can get the conversation started.
Questions to Determine If Independent Living is Right for Your Parent
As your parent (or parents) age, it’s a good idea to check in on them regularly and see how they are doing. Sometimes it can be hard to identify gradual changes in activity level or mood. The following questions will help you to engage in conversation with your parent about their current living situation and long-term plans.
1. Does Keeping Up With Home Maintenance Stress You Out?
Most of us can probably name a few chores we would prefer not to have to deal with. And the truth is, our houses age just like we do. The older a property gets the more work it takes to maintain it. If your parent feels stressed out by housework, or think it’s going to become overwhelming in the future, then it may be time to consider a new living arrangement.
2. Would You Like Assistance With Cooking Or Housekeeping?
Cooking and housekeeping can be time consuming and challenging, especially as we age. Ask your parent if they could benefit from any help in the kitchen or at home. If your parent is unlikely to admit they need a little extra help, you could also start by asking what their go-to meals are. From there you can ask about food preparation and if they ever wish they had more variety in meals. What plans do they have to ensure these needs are met if their care needs change?
3. Do You Wish You Had Fewer Bills To Keep Track Of?
We have never met anyone who said they enjoyed paying bills. We’re guessing your parent isn’t going to be any different in that regard. But this question is about the sheer numbers of bills and expenses your parent needs to keep track of. When’s the last time they — or even you — sat down and went through all of them? Have they ever missed a payment? It may be time to take inventory. At an independent senior living community, many of their bills could be consolidated as part of the monthly fee.
4. Do You Still Enjoy Driving? Does It Ever Stress You Out?
There are a number of reasons why older adults may find driving has lost some of its appeal. As we age our reaction time slows down. Changes in vision can make driving at dusk and in dark conditions more challenging for seniors. If driving is becoming more challenging, let them know that a senior living community often offers scheduled transportation. They wouldn’t even need to leave their car behind. There’s generally ample parking available at a senior living community and they could drive whenever they wish. They just wouldn’t have to.
5. Do You Still Feel Safe In Your Home?
Older adults who are living in multi-story homes or on their own may not feel as safe as they once did navigating around the house. Getting up and down the stairs or getting in and out of the shower may be becoming more difficult. If your parent feels unsafe at home for any reason, tell them about how a senior living community has been designed with the needs of older adults in mind, with accessible and secure surroundings and on-call assistance whenever they need it.
6. Do You Ever Feel Lonely At Home?
Most of us feel lonely from time to time. But if your parent finds themselves feeling lonely more often, then it may be worth considering if they might be happier in a community setting. Older adults who live in retirement communities have more opportunities to socialize through group activities, and even while doing everyday activities like dining or exercising. Living in a senior living community can also be a great way to combat seasonal loneliness.
7. Do You Have a Plan in Place if Your Care Needs Change?
Your parent may be perfectly healthy now, but what would happen if their health needs changed either gradually or suddenly? Are you close enough to help take care of them? Would you have to hire a caregiver or scramble to find a new housing arrangement to meet their needs? Remind them that 70% of seniors are expected to need some form of long-term care in their lifetime. It’s critical that they plan ahead for that.
8. What Can I Do To Help You Plan For Your Long-Term Care?
Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to ask for help when you need it most. Ask your parent if they have any concerns about their long-term care and how you can help. This simple question can be all you need to start a conversation about a move to an independent living community.
Explore Independent Living Options at Harbour’s Edge
Where your parent chooses to live for the next chapter of their lives matters. Harbour’s Edge is a luxury senior living community in Delray Beach, Florida. Not only is our community located in a beautiful coastal location with lots of sunshine, but it also offers plenty of opportunities for your parent to stay active, meet new people and live their best lives.
Contact us or complete the form below to learn more, or to schedule a tour.