When considering a retirement community, most potential residents and their families inquire about:
1. Types of accommodations (independent living, assisted living). This should also include information about the community’s financial strength.
2. Amenities (wellness resources, enrichment programs). This should also include information about availability, frequency and content.
3. Cost (monthly fees, additional fees). This should also include information about what is included in the monthly fee as well as a schedule of all additional fees.
While this is good starting point, I have found the following 10 questions particularly useful in the vetting process:
1. What input is allowed by residents?
2. How do I maintain my freedom and independence?
3. How will you help me continue my interest in wellness and fitness?
4. What are your five most popular programs in your community?
5. How do you cater to my special dietary needs?
6. Do you have set menu that repeats itself or you have real variety in your food and allow feedback from your residents on a regular basis?
7. How do you accommodate couples if one is social and one is not?
8. Will my pet be welcomed there?
9. What kind of emergency response systems do you have?
10. If I don’t have a car or can’t drive, how do I get around to my appointments, errands, etc.?