Moving to a Retirement Community

Common Misconceptions

There are many inaccurate notions surrounding retirement living. We asked people what their biggest misconceptions were and what they would share with someone considering a transition to a new community:

Play Video placeholderIt's not a "Home."

It's not a "Home." Transcript is below

I think some people from the outside may not be aware of the full range of services that we have here. When people first come here, if they're young enough and enable enough, they can live quite independently. And sometimes move into assisted living for a few days after surgery or something like that. But I think some people on the outside think of the whole place as a "home" quote. Yeah.

Play Video placeholderYou're not giving up your independence.

You're not giving up your independence. Transcript is below

I think the misconceptions that they're giving up all their independence, they're not gonna be able to do anything within the communities anymore or anything with their families, which they're still able to go out and family functions, do community events, anything of that nature. It's like some people, I think they feel that when they're going into assisted living or skilled nursing, like they're almost going into a prison where they're gonna be locked in and not be able to see the outdoors anymore. It's not like that. And it's, you still have freedom.

MYTH: The residents are all very sick.

  • FACT: A care community is a place where residents live when they need assistance with the tasks involved in daily living. Some residents just want to live in a maintenance free home where help is available if needed. Many residents live active lives.

MYTH: Retirement communities are only for wealthy people.

  • FACT: There is no question that care communities can be costly, but comparing the cost of similar care in a hospital or at home shows most communities to be sensible financial options. Before signing any contract with a community, meet with a financial professional or elder-care lawyer to work out the best ways to afford care.

MYTH: If I leave my home, I give up my independence.

  • FACT: Assisted living today provides a safe and healthy living place that meets your needs, including the need for independence. Modern assisted living provides the independence of home with the security of knowing that help is always at hand.

MYTH: My family will abandon me there.

  • FACT: This is a valid concern and one that families need to discuss together. Research shows that as much older adults want to be independent, they also want to experience connection with their adult children. Often, older adults fear that if they move to assisted living, they won’t need their family to help them around the house, so they’ll never see them.

    As difficult as it may be, make your feelings known to your family and make a plan for recurring family visits. Instead of using visits to provide care and help you maintain the house, you’ll be able to spend time together and focus on simply enjoying each other’s company.

MYTH: Retirement homes smell bad.

  • FACT: A quality, well-kept living facility should not have a bad odor. A bad smell could be a warning sign that people who live there are not receiving proper care.