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When you’re sorting through the various senior living options that are out there, there are a variety of factors to take into consideration. While location and cost can be the major ones, amenities also play a role.

Leaving your home and entering a senior living arrangement means getting used to many new things and people. Having amenities available on site will not only make the adjustment better, but result in a better quality of life.

While different senior living options will offer different amenities based on the facility, there are many they will have in common. Let’s take a look at what types of amenities are typically offered at different senior living options.

Common Assisted Living Amenities

If you are choosing to live in an assisted living facility you may need help with individual daily needs but may still be fairly independent. This means you can still enjoy a wide variety of amenities. At these facilities you’ll typically find:

  • Linen service (cleaning & changing)
  • Medication management
  • Housekeeping
  • Laundry Service (many will usually do it for you)
  • Beauty salon & barber shop
  • Massage therapists
  • Private dining rooms (for residents who want to entertain family and friends)
  • Library/Computers
  • Game room
  • Entertainment

If you have a pet you don’t want to say goodbye to because you’re moving to an assisted living facility, you can ask if your new home will be pet friendly. Some facilities are, but this policy varies by facility.

Common Retirement Community Amenities

Seniors living in a retirement community are still independent and fairly active. Retirement communities can consist of condos, apartments, or stand-alone houses. This configuration varies from place to place.

While those in retirement communities typically don’t look for medical supervision as an amenity, some retirement communities will specialize in the treatment of illnesses, such as dementia and diabetes. These specialized care communities may offer different amenities than are found in your standard retirement community.

Your typical retirement community is comprised of seniors who want to remain active and look for amenities that support that goal. Many of the amenities mirror those found at high-quality hotels. Commons amenities found in retirement communities include:

  • Fitness center/group exercise
  • Activity room (activity coordinator typically onsite)
  • Beauty salon
  • Full Independent Kitchen
  • Internet service
  • Swimming Pool
  • Security services

Many retirement communities are pet-friendly because the living space is not shared. Since those living in a retirement community have their own separate homes, they are allowed to have pets. There may still be rules as to the number of pets and types of pets. It’s always best to check with each individual facility.

Common Nursing Home Amenities

Those living in nursing homes typically need the most assistance and are typically not independent. They not only need medical help, but often need help with daily tasks like bathing. Residents are monitored 24 hours a day and can also receive different types of therapy as part of their stay. While some people stay at nursing homes temporarily to recover from surgery or illness, others are there for the duration.

Over the years nursing homes have changed from facilities with strict schedules about things like eating and bathing, to those that are more focused on caring for the resident as a whole as well as giving them more options. When people enter a nursing home they may feel as though much of their independence has been stripped away. While there is still a focus on medical care, nursing homes also offer various amenities to give residents a more well-rounded experience and to make it feel like home as much as possible. These amenities typically include:

  • Common social room to be used for games & entertainment
  • Group trips to local events
  • Laundry & housekeeping services
  • Art classes
  • Library/Reading Room
  • Chapel
  • Beauty salon/Barber shop

While many nursing homes many not allow residents to have individual pets with them during their stay, many have group pets. These common pets are shared by all residents. Staff will bring them around to patients for regular visits. Many times this type of pet therapy is comforting to patients.

No matter which type of senior living option you choose, many hold social hours for residents to meet and interact. This is a great way to see who is living with you and to find out who shares the same interests.

Questions to Ask About Amenities

While many amenities may be included in the price to live at any of the senior living options mentioned, there are some that may charge a small fee.

As you tour different senior living options, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Is there a charge to use the beauty salon/barber shop?
  • Are all activities included (classes, workshops)?
  • Is all internet service free?
  • Are there fees for group outings?

Those are the basic areas where you may be expected to pay for a particular service. Even if you do, the prices are typically discounted dramatically and are only a fraction of what you pay outside the facility or community.

If you have questions about the various senior living options and amenities that are out there, call us toll-free on our helpline. We would be happy to assist you as you decide which type of senior living option is best for you. You can also browse the communities found in our directory and find the amenities that are most important to you.

Reviewed By

Scott Witt

Elder Home Care Expert

Scott founded Select Home Care Portland in 2009 and has been helping seniors live their best life at home or in their local senior community ever since. As an advocate for seniors, the primary philosophy has been to listen, educate and provide… Learn More About Scott Witt

Written By

Jeff Hoyt

Editor in Chief

Since graduating from Harvard with an honors degree in Statistics, Jeff has been creating content in print, online, and on television. Much of his work has been dedicated to informing seniors on how to live better lives. As Editor-in-Chief of the personal… Learn More About Jeff Hoyt

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