What is most important to you in your senior living community search? Price, location and availability are likely at the top of your list… but don’t overlook all the added features that come along with senior living – namely, the amenities a senior living community offers you.
While room, board and utilities are the most basic factors in your senior living search, there is much more to consider when deciding between your options. Amenities may be a deal-breaker or difference-maker in your final decision.
Common types of senior living amenities
When it comes to amenities, there are different categories to consider. Of course, each community will have specific amenities, but here is a general overview of categories that most senior living communities offer.
Safety and security
Safety features are essential in any senior living community, so it’s no surprise that practically all communities offer one or more of the following:
- Accessible bathroom features
- Staff on duty 24/7
- Pull cords or pendants for emergencies
- Accessible living spaces
Activities are beneficial for older adults for a variety of reasons, the most important being that they provide opportunities for socialization. Most senior living communities have an activities director on staff who is in charge of resident engagement, and who plans and leads a regular schedule of activities .
Many senior living communities offer amenities for those interested in regular physical activity, such as a wellness center featuring a gym and physical therapy room. Of course, other communities may offer more relaxing or low-impact opportunities for fitness, such as fitness classes or walking paths.
Depending on the interests of its residents, some senior living communities offer various spaces or rooms dedicated to resident activities. Most senior living communities offer libraries stocked with large-print books for residents who are avid readers. Other communities may offer multipurpose common areas that can accommodate a variety of hobbies and activities.
Almost all senior living communities have one or more dining areas, but some communities really invest in keeping their dining areas renovated and up-to-date to provide a comfortable atmosphere for residents and guests. Some communities offer dining options like grab-n-go snack bars.
When weather permits, outdoor spaces can be a plus for residents looking to get fresh air outside. Examples of outdoor amenities include courtyards with raised garden beds, onsite gardens, walking paths and outdoor patios. Some communities even offer gardening spaces for residents to plant and care for their own plants.
Choosing the amenities that are important to you
Because senior living is about what works best for you, it helps to decide which amenities are important to you and which don’t matter as much. Does relaxation appeal to you more? Maybe physical fitness amenities aren’t as important to you, then. Does having a place to enjoy your hobbies or crafts sound desirable? You’ll want to make sure you have opportunities to do so at your senior living community of choice.
Tip: List your must-haves and nice-to-haves
First, it helps to make a list of which amenities are must-haves to you, and which are optional nice-to-haves. Must-haves could potentially be deal-breakers if you’re comparing multiple communities, while nice-to-haves are desirable, but not absolutely necessary.
Your must-have and nice-to-have lists could look something like this:
- Safety features like 24/7 staffing
- No steps in your living space
- Outdoor common area(s)
- Space for crafting hobbies
- Library with large-print books
- Walking paths
- Fitness classes
Comparing senior living communities by amenities offered
Once you have a list of amenities divided into must-haves and nice-to-haves, take some time to compare your list to what your prospective communities have to offer. Putting each community side-by-side can be helpful if you are trying to narrow down your options or decide between your last few choices.
About Abe’s Garden Community
Abe’s Garden Community is located in the Greater Nashville Area in the suburb of Belle Meade, Tennessee. We offer independent living, assisted living, and residential memory support. We are a nationally recognized leader in improving the quality of memory care for our residents and others across the nation.
Looking for senior living for yourself or a family member? We’d love to be included on your list of prospective communities. See our community for yourself. Contact us today to learn more about Abe’s Garden Community and to schedule your tour.