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How to Smoothly Transition a Loved One Into Assisted Living

 Posted by Website Administrator on August 5, 2021 at 8:34 AM

When the time comes to help a loved one transition into assisted living, the options can be overwhelming, making an emotionally and financially fraught situation all the more challenging. Ideally, you’ll have the conversation about long-term care before the need arises, but even then, you may have some tough decisions to navigate.

Here’s how to move your loved one into assisted living.

Areas of Specialty 
Not all assisted living facilities are the same, and if you have a loved one with specific needs, you’ll want to do some comparisons to find the right fit. For example, are you looking for memory or incontinence care? Can your loved one safely prepare meals and handle personal hygiene and activities of daily living, or do they require a higher degree of care? Of course, every facility has its own unique features, social programs, and housing options, and depending on the circumstances, you may want a place in which your loved one can transition from one degree of care to another as needed, in the same space.

Questions to Ask 
It can be especially difficult to try and find an assisted living facility if you live far away from your loved one and aren’t able to visit facilities in person. Ask to speak to a facility’s social worker and request a virtual tour. According to the Public Broadcasting System, you’ll want to ask about the admissions process, the type and degree of care available, and how the facility will communicate with you. If your loved one has specific wants or needs (e.g., they want to bring their pet, have dietary restrictions), ask about these upfront.

Paying for Assisted Living 
Assisted living can require a significant financial investment, particularly if your loved one needs specialized care. Many families assume Medicaid will pay for it, and while it may cover some of the expenses, it rarely covers everything and may limit the choices and locations available. The facility you choose may be able to help you assess different types of financing options or connect you with social services that can help. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services provides resources as well. If your loved one doesn’t yet need to move into assisted living, have a frank talk with them about their finances and their wishes.

Liquidating Assets 
Many families liquidate the assets of their loved ones to finance their long-term care. While this can be an emotional process, in many ways, it’s quite practical. Your loved one will have a new place to live, and their current home will help finance their next phase of life. To get an idea of what a home sale might net, you’ll need to know the mortgage balance and the estimated value. You’ll also need to factor in real estate commissions and other associated fees.

Caregivers and relatives often struggle with the decision to move a loved one into assisted living, but in many cases, it is the kindest and safest option for ensuring their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. A bit of advanced research can help you make the right decisions for those you care for.  

To learn how Caring Transitions can help you manage all the details of senior transitioning, call 908-666-2699 and request a free consultation.

Photo by Pixabay

Source: Annabelle Harris of elders.center started blogging nearly a decade ago when she was facing the prospect of retirement and old age. Today she helps soon-to-be-seniors and already-seniors move gracefully into their golden years by providing resources that will answer most of your aging questions and help navigate the intricacies of old age.