Some find community living a perfect fit | Life Waves

A recent AARP poll found that nearly 60 percent of Baby Boomers say they are concerned about living independently, and more than 50 percent say they have begun to think about how they would pay for independent living assistance as they get older.

Crunching the Numbers

Mereen Klein, 86, started looking at the costs of keeping her own apartment versus independent living when her eyesight declined. She decided to move to an independent retirement living community that met her needs.

“It was right for me with my fixed income, and the money covers everything,” said Klein.

For Klein, it not only made financial sense, it also gave her back some of her freedom.

“I can take the community bus down to the bank or out to dinner. I can even go to the doctor and my appointments without bugging anyone for a ride,” said Klein. “I have more independence now than when I lived alone.”

Ask the Right Questions

To calculate the true costs of making the move to an independent retirement community, seniors should ask as many questions as possible prior to moving in, to uncover any buy-in fees, to determine if a long-term lease is required and to see if the “feel” of the community is right.

Seventy three-year-old Julianne (Judy) Kayatt knows this all too well. She sold her home and moved into a community that didn’t offer much for her money and wasn’t as caring as she’d hoped. After only a few months, she started her search again and found a perfect fit.

“My family likes that I am happy here, and I like that I can still be independent and live here,” said Kayatt. “I am free to go where I want; I am enjoying activities and events and I’m surrounded by friends. I know I can be happy here for a long time.”

The Golden Years

Making the move to an independent living community can be an affordable way to make the most of one’s retirement years. Kayatt and Klein have all seen the benefits to cutting ties to a house or an apartment in favor of community living.

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