As we age, we sometimes need a little help doing things that used to come easily. If you’re noticing that chores take a long time or your health needs extra attention, assisted living services might be able to help. Fort Wayne has some of the best assisted living facilities in the area, but you should fully understand the cost and ways to pay for this care before you make your final decision. This guide should help you learn more about Fort Wayne assisted living costs.
Assisted living means services that help those who can’t do everything on their own anymore but aren’t ready for 24/7 skilled nursing care. This definition leaves a lot of room for what assisted living can do for you. Services could include:
Planning and preparing healthy meals and cleaning up afterward.
Helping bathe, dress, and groom patients.
Moving patients out of bed and into a wheelchair and maneuvering around the house.
Transportation to essential appointments or errands.
Reminders to take medication or go to therapy.
Light housekeeping that could include washing dishes, cleaning floors, and doing laundry.
Assisted living can occur in your home through the help of a homemaker or home health aide. These caregivers can drop in daily for a few hours or stay overnight as necessary. Some senior living groups have residential care programs for the surrounding neighborhood.
A facility will offer some of the same services, but you will be in an apartment or room with a central gathering area. This area is for meals, or you can go to different social events like art class, senior fitness, or live entertainment. Another bonus of a facility is they can offer a continuum of care which allows seniors to age in place and get the care they need as their health changes.
55% of the population is over 85.
There are over 200 assisted living communities in Indiana.
22% of the population need help with walking, 37% need help with getting dressed, and 48% need help with bathing.
13% of facility residents rely on Medicaid, and 32% of the communities in Indiana are Medicaid approved.
Indiana has no admission requirements for assisted living, but residents will be discharged if they are a threat to themselves or others or if they need 24-hour nursing care.
Seniors in Fort Wayne will be pleased to know that the average cost of assisted living services here is in line with national averages. A stay in an assisted living facility in the area costs an average of $35,640 per year, and national median costs are around $43,539. Genworth Cost of Care also estimates that prices could drop as much as 7% over the course of five years.
In-home services are a little pricier and a bit higher than national averages. A homemaker in Fort Wayne would cost around $46,629, and a home health aide would cost around $46,904 annually. The national averages for these services are $45,760 and $46,332 respectively. These costs are estimated to rise between 2% and 4%.
Questions are some of the best ways to learn about costs and lifestyle in assisted living facilities. As you start your search, don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as possible. Asking questions will help you determine whether the facility will be a good fit for your needs and budget. Here are some questions to get you started:
What is the total cost? Does that include utilities, cable, and housekeeping?
What is considered the extra services? How much do those cost?
If there is housekeeping, what services do they provide?
Do you accept Medicaid?
Are there programs to help me cover costs if necessary?
What is the residency agreement?
May I see the service provider’s disclosure detailing all fees, charges, procedures, and policies?
Am I required to get renter’s insurance?
What meal plans are available? Can I supplement with outside food?
Is there transportation for residents?
Am I allowed to have overnight guests?
Can I use independent service providers to take care of things like grocery shopping or dog walking?
What are the refund and transfer policies? Is it written down?
Am I allowed to have pets? Do you charge a pet fee?
These questions are from the Assisted Living Federation of America’s Guide to Choosing an Assisted Living Community.
Even though long-term care costs can be high, there are ways to save your money. The first is to be smart in your assisted living decisions. Look at your situation and see if in-home care or moving to a facility will save you more money in the long run. While in-home care costs are higher, if your house is paid off and doesn’t need a lot of upkeep, it could be cheaper to use in-home care. A facility might be better for seniors who still have a mortgage or whose house needs a lot of repairs and maintenance.
If you decide to live in a facility, a roommate might be an option. Some communities don’t allow this, but if they do, it’s an effective way to cut your costs in half. If you go this route, try it out before you make it permanent. Once both residents agree that it works, sign a lease or agreement together.
Low-income seniors might be able to find a facility that operates on a sliding scale rate. What this means is all your finances will be considered, and then you’ll get a special price that you can afford on your budget. Nonprofit facilities might offer this but not every community has it, so be sure to ask first.
If you’re approved, you can use Medicaid to pay for in-home or facility care. Just be sure to choose places that are Medicaid certified. Veterans and the widows of veterans can use VA benefits to cover assisted living. Long-term care insurance often covers assisted living, so if you have a policy, check your coverage.
Seniors with a home can consider selling it to use the profits for their care, or if that isn’t an option, they might get a reverse mortgage. This loan allows you to use the equity in your house to pay for things like assisted living, but there are some consequences. Discuss your options with a HUD-certified counselor.
Find assisted living in Fort Wayne near you.