Moving into a retirement village can be a significant lifestyle change. When choosing a retirement home, it’s important to consider some of the financial, social and health implications that may affect your decision and impact your retirement lifestyle. Factors like location, amenities and facilities, level of care and social interactions can have a big impact on how you enjoy your retirement.
Before making a decision, it’s important to do your research and carefully consider what you need in a retirement community and what you would like. To help, we’ve outlined a few points to consider when choosing a retirement home.
Everyone’s retirement will be different. The lifestyle you may want or need will look very different to someone else’s ideal retirement. Have a careful think about what kind of lifestyle you’d like and then see if your chosen retirement communities can provide it.
Some lifestyle factors to consider include physical activities, amount of socialising and community, and the comfort of your surroundings. Health and mobility can also have a big impact on lifestyle. So, the level of care you require can also affect the lifestyle you want to have.
If you’re looking for a complete lifestyle change, you may want to consider a resort-style retirement community in somewhere like Queensland. However, if you want to retain as much as your home lifestyle as possible, you may want to consider a local community.
In terms of leisure, golf courses and tennis courts are common facilities that active retirees look for. Other activities to consider are gardening and volunteering opportunities. In most retirement communities, you will pay for the facilities and amenities on offer, so it’s important to work out if these are things you actually need.
Consider your Finances
Moving into a retirement home is a huge lifestyle shift and a significant financial decision. It’s important to first talk to a financial planner to get a clear picture of your finances and work out what you can afford to spend. Some financial aspects to consider include whether to sell or rent out your current home before moving, whether you are eligible for any government support and what to do with your super or investments.
It’s also important to consider the level of care you require, as this can increase the cost of care and will need to be factored into your financial thinking.
Once you have a sense of what you will be able to spend, you can start approaching retirement communities, villages and homes and discussing pricing packages.
Amenities and Facilities
Aged care homes generally offer a variety of amenities for residents. Because you’re going to be paying for such amenities, it’s worth thinking about the ones that matter to you.
Many retirement villages will often offer things like restaurants and cafes, community areas, libraries, onsite medial assistance, physical therapy, events and entertainment and recreational activities. Some of these may be essentials, while others can be considered luxuries. Again, it’s important to have a list of your essential amenities, so you can be sure that your chosen retirement village provides what you need.
Your life outside of the retirement village is equally important as your life inside of it. If you want to regularly see your loved ones, make sure to choose a retirement home that’s close to family. If you want to spend your time enjoying a quiet rural life, maybe it’s a good idea to choose a village that’s in the countryside.
Also, make sure that you’re close to other facilities that are important in your social life. This might include churches, shopping centres, golf courses or parks.
Lastly, an important aspect to consider is the accessibility of healthcare facilities in case of an emergency.
Whatever the case might be, it’s important to have a good think about what you need to be close to during your retired years.
Level of Care Required
When choosing a retirement home, it’s important to consider the amount of assistance you’re going to need on a day-to-day basis. Are you going to need 24-hour medical attention? Do you need assistance in getting around the village? Do you need a unique type of support such as spiritual or pastoral care? Other retirees might even need special assistance due to dementia.
Retirement homes offer a range of services designed to help you with your daily needs. This might include day-to-day tasks like grocery shopping and doing the laundry, or it could involve mobility support or ongoing essential medical care.
Do some research on the level of care that different retirement homes provide. If you require a certain level of assistance, it is vital that your chosen village suits your personal requirements.
Discuss with Family and Friends
It’s important to consult with your friends and family about the decision of moving into a retirement home. Although you will ultimately make the final decision, remember that others are also involved in this matter and will be affected by it.
Additionally, you might know people that are currently living in retirement homes already. If that’s the case, it might be worth asking for their opinion before making a decision.
It’s a big step for many retirees. It’s worth thinking about the things above before making a change. You don’t want to be living in a retirement home just to find out that there were better options for you.
Do your research, ask for second opinions and take all the time you need.