Condo living and senior living communities are not the same. They offer different lifestyles depending on what is important to you.
Here’s a side by side look at the differences between residing in a condo and residing in a senior living community:
Top 4 Differences in a Senior Living Community vs. a Condo
1. Maintenance: Interior and Exterior
Condo: Exterior maintenance is done for you whether you move to a condo or community. However, interior maintenance is your responsibility if you live in a condo.
Community: Both exterior and interior maintenance are taken care of when you move to a community. For example, if you had a problem with an appliance in your patio home at Twin Towers. It would be repaired or replaced at no additional out-of-pocket expense to you.
2. Monthly Fee
Condo: In a condo, there is a monthly association fee that pays for maintenance. This is for the building and grounds as well as amenities, such as a pool or workout room.
Community:A senior living community typically has a monthly fee that covers a myriad of services such as:
- Maintenance and grounds upkeep
- Free or reduced memberships to on-campus health club
- Planned outings
- Enrichment classes
- Campus events
Check with the community for a full list of included amenities and services.
3. Home Ownership
Condo: Condo living is home ownership. Therefore, select your neighborhood and neighbors as you did when you purchased your first home. When it comes time to sell, you will be beholden to the fluctuating and unpredictable real estate market. So opt for a desirable, safe and accessible location.
Create a backup plan (or person) to help divest of the condo should you need it. People who move from a condo to an assisted living community often need help. Oftentimes the packing and selling of their condo becomes a family member’s responsibility because of health issues.
Community: Residing in a senior living patio home, apartment or other accommodation does not require home ownership. Communities maintain the ownership of their homes and thus have a vested interest in maintaining them.
4. A Plan for Future Healthcare Needs
Condo: Having a plan for potential healthcare needs is important if you plan to age in your condo. Home care or family assistance is how this is usually handled.
Therefore be sure you understand the costs of in-home care. In addition understand the willingness and capability of your family to help. Planning and communication are important for this option.
Community: Those living in a senior living community, such as Twin Towers, have purchased a contract for lifetime services. They are guaranteed access to assisted living and/or nursing care should they need it. They have put in place a plan for their future.
Your Future Living Accommodations
In the final analysis, it’s important to understand what is most important to you. Review your senior living options and research the communities of interest to you so you can evaluate your choices.
From Twin Towers Blog, a continuing care retirement community in Cincinnati, Ohio.