Retiring to the Great Smoky Mountains seems like a dream come true for many, but does Knoxville hold senior living options for retirees? The answer is yes, as the city and surrounding areas offer more than 91 services and providers, ranging from in-home care agencies to skilled nursing facilities.
When compared to the national average for in-home health care aides and homemaker services, Knoxville costs less per hour. The median rate in the city is $18 compared to $20 nationally. Adult day centers charge $61 per day on average compared to the higher national daily rate of $69.
Assisted living communities offer independent living with the facility taking care of any upkeep and landscape. The monthly U.S. rate for a one bedroom, single occupancy apartment is $3,600. You can grab a one bedroom in Knoxville at the lower cost of $3,438 per month. That is an annual savings of close to $2000.
Skilled nursing facilities are growing each year as baby boomers continue to retire. The costs are expected to grow up to 5 percent in the next five years for a private room and 4 percent for a semi-private room, according to the 2015 Genworth Cost of Care Survey for Tennessee. Semi-private rooms cost less, both on a national and state level. The U.S. average rate is $220 with Tennessee’s rate averaging $192 per day. Knoxville’s median rate hits middle of the road with $204 per day.
Private rooms follow the same pattern with the national average at $250 per day and the state average at $207. You can find a private room in Knoxville for $222 per day on average.
The type of care you need should be based on availability, need, and budget.
Home Care Services- About 12 million people rely on home health care services to assist with daily tasks that are too difficult to perform on their own. These screened, insured and bonded aides can help with bathing, dressing, light housekeeping, errands, and transportation. Choose an agency that offers specialized disease training and background checks for their aides, like Home Helpers or Right at Home West Knoxville.
Assisted Living Facilities in Knoxville- Assisted living facilities offer you or your loved one community and independent living without the hassle of chores and upkeep. There are several to choose from in Knoxville including living in a sprawling resort-style lodge like the Brookdale Deane Hill or a mansion of a home at Manorhouse Assisted Living. Many try to mirror your lifestyle before retirement including on-site beauty salons and restaurant-style dining. Research and compare facilities to find ones that offer continuum care and Alzheimer’s disease care, if needed.
Nursing Homes in the Area- Nursing homes can offer short-term care after a fall or stroke or more intensive long-term care. Most also cover rehabilitative services like occupational, physical, and speech therapy. Some skilled nursing facilities like the Shannondale of Knoxville provide indoor common areas and activities on-site to keep you engaged. Devotional services may be available at some locations for those that cannot travel to attend religious services.
Make it a point to tour several facilities to get a feel for the staff and confirm the facility is meeting federal regulations. You should also consider asking friends and family for local recommendations.
There are several options for funding your future senior care in Tennessee.
Long-term care policy
Life insurance policy – These policies can be cashed out early for a percentage of the cash value, usually 50 to 75 percent.
VA Aid and Attendance pension – A benefit for wartime veterans and their spouses to help pay for senior care.
Medicare for short-term care – Medicare will cover up to 100 days of short-term skilled nursing care in a skilled nursing facility for each “spell.”
TennCare. Tennessee’s Medicaid program – This program is for low income seniors meeting eligibility requirements, both medically and financially.
Selling your home or renting your home
Reverse mortgage – Complicated option if you plan to stay in your home long-term or will be in a facility for a short time, however you cannot move out of your home as it will nullify the loan and activate foreclosure.
Consult with a financial advisor or elder-law attorney before making any final decisions to learn about stipulations about each one. Research and compare senior living options online and take the time to tour each one before committing to one.
Find assisted living in Knoxville near you.