While many Americans can live functionally after they’re retired at the average age of 63, living alone can become more difficult the older one gets. If your loved one is beginning to have trouble living by themselves — for instance, they’re experiencing memory problems, have suffered from injuries or illnesses, or experience frequent falls — it may be time to consider assisted living.

Finding the best care facility for an aging loved one doesn’t have to be difficult. By following these steps you can be sure your loved one is well taken care of in a considerate and careful environment when the time comes.

  1. Understand Your Budget
    Before you can begin looking for the best care facility available for your loved one, look at your finances and your loved one’s finances to understand your budget and what you can afford.

    Take into account how much your loved one receives from social security or pensions and if they receive any VA benefits. Consider how much you and other family members may be able to contribute to the budget.

    After you’ve figured out a comfortable number, work out the amount that would be feasible to spend monthly on a care facility or nursing home. Additionally, look into how much any long-term care insurance may cover if your loved one has insurance.
  2. Do Your Research
    Look into the different care facilities available through online and social resources. Record the amenities that are available, the types of activities that residents can partake in, and whether any exercise classes are offered. Additionally, look into the types of services that are available that may be necessary for your loved one’s comfort.

    Be sure to take into account the reviews of current and past residents. Pictures of a care facility will be able to tell you what the home looks like, but only reviews can inform you what it would really be like to live there and whether your loved one would be comfortable there.
  3. Take Tours
    Like colleges and apartment buildings, taking a tour of your loved one’s potential nursing home is essential. Tours will give you a first-hand look at what the facility and community are like, how the atmosphere feels, what the other residents are like, and how the nurses and workers behave toward their residents.

    Take the time to ask those on the tour any questions you may have and don’t be afraid to approach the residents if they look friendly. Check out the living area as you would check out an apartment. Is the water pressure good? Is there any background noise that may be bothersome? Make sure your loved one is also coming along on the tour as they will be the one living in the facility and it’s important for them to know first hand whether or not they believe they would be comfortable living there.

By figuring out your budget, doing your research, and taking routine tours of potential care facilities, you can be sure when the time comes to make your decision regarding your loved one’s assisted living that it’s the right choice. You’ll feel confident knowing your loved one is comfortable in a safe, secure, and caring environment.