Chicago is actually a great city for seniors who might need a little help with their daily schedule and activities. There is a great public transportation system as well as plenty of resources to make sure all of your needs are met. It’s important though to make sure you know everything about assisted living so you can choose the care plan that works best for you and your needs.
Assisted living can mean a few different things and each type of assisted living is going to have a different cost. In order to know what you should choose, we’re going to go through all the different costs you might find and the questions you should ask as well as ways to pay and save for your care.
In order to understand what type of care you’re receiving, here are the services that could be covered under assisted living:
Daily tasks like personal grooming such as bathing, getting dressed and brushing hair or teeth.
Medication reminders as well as a daily schedule of medical appointments you might have.
Transportation services to medical appointments, errands, or daily outings.
Household chores like meal preparation, laundry services, and housekeeping.
You don’t necessarily have to leave your home to get assisted living services. If you want to be able to stay in your house, you can hire a home health aide or even a housekeeper to take care of the chores you’re no longer able to tend to.
If it isn’t possible for you to stay in your home, that doesn’t mean you have to give up all of your independence. Many assisted living communities have separate homes or apartments with a central location to meet and take part in things like group classes, fitness, and other social activities.
Chicago has nine different assisted living facilities, each with multiple units that are spread across each region of the city.
Chicago offers a wide range of services for seniors who might need help in their home, including a repair service for minor home repairs for low-income seniors.
There are three different classifications of care in Chicago, assisted living, supportive living, and nursing homes.
Illinois has a long-term care ombudsman program that protects the quality of life for all seniors living in a care facility or assisted living community.
Chicago assisted living facilities are going to run a little higher than the national average. In 2015, Genworth Cost of Care Survey found that across the U.S. the average cost of an assisted living facility was about $43,200 and in Chicago that cost went up to $58,740. Over the next five years, that cost is expected to increase about 4%.
If you wanted to choose in-home health care, the average cost in Chicago is going to be around $50,000 to $51,000. This cost will increase over the next five years.
Finding the right assisted living plan for you is going to take some researching and a lot of questions. Before you make your decision you want to make sure that you have looked at all the pros and cons and that you know exactly the kind of services you will be receiving. Since you will be spending a large portion of money on your care, you want to find out everything that is covered and plan for your change in needs.
Here are just a few of the important questions you should ask:
Is there a continuum of care at this facility and will the price change as my care needs change?
Can I look over the residency agreement?
Are there grants or scholarships that can help cover the cost of my care?
Does the facility accept Medicaid, Medicare, or any other insurance policy that you might have?
Can I see a full list of services and all of the costs associated?
As you start looking at specific places, you might find you have even more questions. Write them all down and don’t be afraid to ask because you need to make sure you feel comfortable with your care.
The price of care might have made you worry about being able to afford your care but there are a few ways that you can save on your costs. First, look into which type of assisted living care will be less expensive for you. It might be better to have an in-home health aide or it might be better to move into a new community.
If you decide to move to a facility, you can always look into getting a roommate as a way to cut the cost of care in half. If you’re a low-income senior or meet the facilities income requirements, you might be eligible to pay a different total cost. Just make sure to talk with each facility and seek out all of your options.
If you qualify for Medicaid or VA benefits, you can use those funds to cover some of your care costs. Those that purchased a long-term care insurance policy can use that to cover most of your care costs. Be sure to talk with your insurance agent to see what the policy covers.
If you own your own home and will no longer be living there, you can sell it and use those funds to cover your cost. A reverse mortgage is another option especially if you still have a spouse living in your home. This can have long-term ramifications though, so talk with a trusted financial advisor first.
Find assisted living in Chicago near you.