Embarking on a significant life change can be exciting and scary. You probably have several questions as you get ready to move to assisted living, including finding the right community for you, how much will everything cost, what will your life be like, and of course, how will you pay for everything. There is some good news – paying for assisted living might not be as bad as you think. Below is some information to help you get familiar with assisted living in the Aurora area.
Assisted living in the Aurora/Denver area is more than the monthly national average of $3,600. In 2016, the median monthly price for assisted living in Aurora averaged $4,250. You can find several options below the mean price. Assisted living communities prices vary based on location and amenities. For example, Canterbury Gardens offers a one-bedroom unit starting at $1,395 a month while New Dawn Assisted Living averages about $6,500 a month. There are also several options that fall in between these two prices points, so you are sure to find one that meets your budget and needs.
There are all kinds of assisted living communities around the Aurora area to meet your needs. You can choose from luxury living, faith-based care, or rural settings. There are even pet-friendly facilities if you wish to keep your furry friend. St. Andrew’s Village offers a convenient location allowing residents to walk to community shops and hair salons. If you want to enjoy the finer things in life and modern conveniences, Garden Plaza of Aurora offers a putting green, on-site physicians office, massage suite, bistro, and a Jacuzzi. With Aurora’s vast assisted living communities, you are sure to find a community that feels like home and offers you the lifestyle you want.
First, you need to decide where you want to live, such as downtown, near parks, or in a rural setting. Then you need to determine what is important to you as far as amenities and lifestyle. Once you have answered those questions, you can begin a more focused search. Ask around and see if neighbors, family, friends or anyone else you know has a referral or experience with one of the assisted living communities. Online reviews are also quite helpful and may give you more details than the community’s marketing materials or website. A local senior care advisor can help match you up with the right facility. Care Patrol has expert advisors that are familiar with area assisting living facilities and can help you narrow down your search even more. Take your advisor and family members with you on your community visits. Most importantly, for each community, be sure you know what your monthly bill covers, which services are extra, how much do the other services cost, and how the community handles health care changes. SeniorAdvisor’s Assisted Living Guidebook provides an expansive list of questions you should ask including paying for care, residency agreements, social activities, medication and health care, policies, and more.
At first, the cost of assisted living may seem very overwhelming, but when you compare the cost of your home and hiring services, you may realize that the cost isn’t so bad. As you compare your home costs to assisted living, you need to include all expenses such as taxes, mortgage, insurance, utilities, maintenance, and possible repairs now and in the future. After you have that total, add in the cost of hiring a visiting health aide and housekeeper to assist you with daily life activities. Also, you will need to consider any upgrades you need to make to your home if your health changes, such as a wheelchair ramp. If you want to pay privately for your assisted living care, you can pay by selling your home. If you don’t want to sell your home for some reason or don’t have a house to sell, there are additional options available to help you pay for assisted living. You cannot count on Medicare or health insurance to pay for assisted living. They do not cover assisted living costs, and worker's’ disability insurance also does not cover this cost. Medicaid, a federal-state program, is an option for low-income and minimal asset seniors. To see if you are eligible or to apply, visit Colorado’s Department of Health Care Policy and Financing website.
If you are a veteran or a widow of a veteran, you may qualify for VA Aid & Attendance pension to pay for assisted living. To be eligible, you or your spouse must have served at least one day during a time of war, but not necessarily in combat. Contact your local Colorado VA benefits office for more information. It may be several months from start to finish before you receive payment because the process can take a while.
If you have a long-term care insurance policy, it will most likely pay your assisted living expenses. Before you depend on this coverage, discuss this policy with your insurance agent. You need to understand limits, lifetime payouts amounts, exclusions, and coverage details. For example, some policies cover services but not the living expenses such as room and board. It is also important that you pay your policy on time to avoid cancellation. Automatic bill pay will pay your insurance bill on time, so you don’t have to worry.
If you want to keep your home for your spouse to live in, you may want to consider a reverse mortgage, which gives you cash based on the equity in your home. You can also look into cashing out a life insurance policy. However, you need to know that these two options can carry tax implications and large fees. We recommend discussing the details with either your financial planner, tax advisor, or an attorney before making this decision.
Now that you have started getting familiar with Aurora assisted living, you can find great resources on SeniorAdvisor, including information on neighborhoods, award-winning care providers, reviews on the facilities, price estimates, and more.
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