Managing a household can be cumbersome at best and downright impractical for many seniors trying to enjoy their hard-earned retirement. When you grow tired of keeping up the family home, find it simply too large for your lifestyle, or yearn for a fuller calendar and shorter to-do list, it may be time to consider your options for independent living.
What is Independent Living?
Independent living is ideal for retired adults who want to restructure their lives to better suit their needs while maintaining the busy lifestyle they know and love. Independent living often means moving into a retirement community or senior living facility where seniors can connect with similarly aged people who share their interests and lifestyle.
Your best days aren’t behind you once you shift to independent living. In fact, your best days are right around the corner! Independent living in a senior community means having all the freedom and activities you currently enjoy without the stress of maintaining a large home. Independent living offers a full and fun lifestyle, from fine dining to fitness and so much more. (And you can say goodbye to shoveling snow on icy Kansas City winter mornings!)
Independent Living vs. Assisted Living
Independent living isn’t all that different from the lifestyle you’ve enjoyed for years prior. It’s taking the independence you enjoy now and combining it with a community of peers and extra support on the home front.
When independent living is no longer viable, you or your loved one can transition smoothly into assisted living. With personalized care programs, community dining, and 24/7 access to medical care, seniors in assisted living can still enjoy high levels of autonomy as they adjust to needing extra support.
Benefits of Independent Living
Independent living gives seniors looking for added support the best of both worlds: complete autonomy, beautifully married with the help they need. Say goodbye to tall staircases, scrubbing windows, and mowing the lawn. Say hello to built-in friendships, luxury residential living, and all the amenities you could imagine!
Independent living means a manageable home with maintenance, landscaping, and housekeeping support. It means easier access to medical care, accommodations for changing needs, and a community of like-minded seniors ready to explore the amenities your independent living community has to offer alongside you.
Options for Independent Living
Although the general concept remains the same, there are a few different ways you can transition into an independent living situation, depending on your preferences and unique situation. Moving into a new setting designed for seniors does not mean losing your autonomy. You can choose exactly where, how, and what you want your independent living set-up to look like!
Aging in Place
Especially common among younger retirees, aging in place is when a senior chooses to remain in their own home instead of downsizing or moving into a retirement community. Usually, aging in place requires more involvement from family and friends, so it’s best to do this only with a strong support system nearby.
If more significant needs do arise, seniors can hire extra help with housekeeping, landscaping, or even in-home care if there isn’t a family member readily available to help out. Many seniors opt to remodel their homes with wheelchair ramps, shower bars, and medical alert systems to make their homes safe and functional for changing physical needs. However, these remodels and care services can be costly and difficult to keep organized. Many seniors find the coordination of all of these services to be a time-consuming job — not exactly how we envision our retirements!
Aging in place also doesn’t have the built-in community of other independent living situations, making it difficult to connect with fellow seniors if you don’t already have a network of friends. Isolation is a big risk for seniors deciding to age in place, especially if mobility issues make driving difficult. And while aging in place may seem easier at first glance because you won’t need to downsize, don’t forget: decluttering and cleaning will need to be done eventually (if not by you, then by your children, a family member, or a professional organizer).
Usually private, gated communities with comfortable one-floor homes surrounded by peers, age-restricted communities are more senior-friendly than aging in place, but without an all-inclusive senior community structure.
Although some maintenance issues, such as landscaping, may be taken care of, age-restricted communities won’t always offer additional support such as housekeeping or in-home care. There also may be HOA guidelines to abide by, so make sure you read the fine print before signing on the dotted line! You’ll also want to consider what the transition would look like if additional health concerns necessitate a little extra help with the day-to-day. Moving is a challenge!
Senior Living Community
To get the perfect balance of independence and support, a senior living or “retirement community” offers all the support and amenities you can imagine while you continue enjoying the lifestyle of independence you know and love.
Choosing a retirement community may mean saying farewell to your family home, but it makes up for that with a loving community of peers, luxurious amenities to keep you active and entertained, quick access to medical care when needed, and all the maintenance support you need to stop stressing about your household and start enjoying every minute of retired life!
And when the time comes, most retirement communities will have assisted living on site and ready for you or your loved one to transition for added support.
Independent Living at St. Anthony’s
For seniors ready to settle down in the charming Brookside area, St. Anthony’s offers spacious and amenity-packed apartments that allow you to continue thriving in your busy lifestyle without worrying about home maintenance and upkeep.
St. Anthony’s partners with residents to take on life’s next adventure, offering all the support you need and freedom you deserve complete with on-site features such as a salon, restaurant, library, classes and activities, fitness center, and Daily Mass in our on-site chapel to cultivate your spiritual life.
Residents of all retired ages and stages can enjoy a fulfilling retirement experience that meets all levels of need, transitioning into assisted living or memory care with ease thanks to our highly-trained and engaged staff.
Start the conversation with us today to discover whether independent living at St. Anthony’s is right for you!