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Just over 200,000 residents of the state of Wyoming may be eligible for special discounts at their favorite shops and restaurants. Why? They’re at least age 50. In other words, about 36 percent of Wyoming’s population are seniors.
How does Wyoming compare to the rest of the country in the percentage of older adults, and what can we learn from other data about the lives of seniors in the state? In many important ways, Wyoming is fairly representative of the nation as a whole. For example, the percentage of people 50 and up is only slightly higher than the overall U.S. rate of 35.3 percent), and the state’s average life expectancy is almost identical to the U.S. rate — 78.4 in Wyoming vs. 78.5 in the U.S. overall.
There are some notable differences, though. For one, Wyoming is aging more rapidly than other states. Between 2010 and 2018, the median age in the state rose by nearly 5 percent, the eighth-fastest growth rate, and almost double the overall national increase. And while a higher-than-average percentage of those 55 and older remain in the workforce (about 44 percent), senior-led households have incomes that are slightly lower than the national median for their age group.
*Includes Black, Native American, Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander or individuals of one or more other races, and Hispanic/Latinx people of any race.
Living Costs for Wyoming's Seniors
Compared to the national average, it is slightly cheaper to live in Wyoming than it is in some other states. Wyoming's housing index is 99.80, just below the average of 100. One bedroom apartments here average out to $630 a month in rent, while two bedroom apartments go for around $810 a month.
Thinking about retiring in Wyoming? Let's take a closer look at the monthly senior living costs in the state. Firstly, home health care costs an average of $4,957 a month. This fee allows older people to live comfortably in their own residences while getting some help with completing errands, meal prep, and housekeeping.
Adult day care facilities are available in Wyoming for seniors to stay at during the day under supervision, and take part in social activities while their caregivers are busy tending to their obligations. It costs around $1,842 a month to have adult day care privileges in the state. Since adult day care does not include extensive health care, it's best for those who are pretty independent, but could use some basic health and therapy services.
Wyoming also offers assisted living facilities statewide for the elderly requiring more help with their everyday tasks. On average, it costs around $3,415 a month to get access to health services and personal care at an assisted living facility in this state.
Last but not least, The Cowboy State has a good number of nursing homes which provide seniors with round the clock supervision and care. Depending on whether you opt for a semi-private room or a fully private room, it can cost anywhere from $7,078 to $8,060 a month to stay at a nursing home in Wyoming. Residents can expect to receive medication, therapy, rehabilitation, skilled nursing care, and personal care on a need basis when staying at a nursing home.
Wyoming's Living Options for Seniors
There are plenty of living options for retirees in Wyoming. Among these options are independent living, assisted living, memory care, and nursing home care, depending on individual needs. Learn more about each option below and see which one is most suitable for you.
Independent living is ideal for older people who are active, healthy, and don't require extensive nursing care. There are more than 10 independent living facilities in Wyoming, and it costs anywhere from $990 to $2,457 a month to stay in one. The state is also home to a variety of apartment choices for seniors 55+ or 65+ depending on the community. Apartment communities typically offer attractive amenities that the elderly enjoy, such as workout rooms, pools and jacuzzis, walking trails, a clubhouse, etc.
Wyoming is home to more than 30 assisted living facilities statewide. For anywhere from $1,800 to $4,468 a month, seniors are able to get access to healthcare, experienced caregivers, and social opportunities to help them thrive. Additionally, residents can expect to get assistance with transportation, laundry, meal services, housekeeping duties, and 24-hour safety surveillance. If you are looking for an affordable assisted living option, then you'll want to look in the Cheyenne area where costs are lower. The highest assisted living costs in Wyoming are in the Casper metropolitan area.
With 25 memory care facilities in Wyoming, seniors with memory loss issues will be sure to find the specialized care they need. Memory care costs an average of $53,766 a year, with the monthly costs ranging from $2,610 up to $6,478. Seniors with dementia related issues will find solace at a memory care facility, as the staff are trained to help seniors cope with their memory loss through medications and counseling. All meals are provided so that seniors are sure to get all their daily nutrition.
Wyoming has nearly 100 senior living providers available that cover all types of care a senior may need. Seniors will want to check the town they're considering to move to, to be sure the senior living providers they need are nearby, rather than 100s of miles away.
There are currently only a few adult daycare centers in Wyoming, all closer to the eastern border in towns like Casper and Gillette. The average cost is $21,840 per year, with a monthly cost range from $1,440 to $3,600 a month. Adult daycare is an incredibly useful resource for busy families that could use help with caring for an elderly loved one. Adult daycare will take complete care of a senior during the day, so their families can get their other responsibilities taken care of.
Hospices are generally the best option for terminally ill seniors. There are around 25 hospices in Wyoming, providing in-home care or at a fully equipped facility. Hospices cover all the bases, as far as providing medications for physical pain, counseling for emotional pain, and chaplain services for spiritual support. The costs associated with hospice care can be covered by most insurances, including Medicare and Medicaid.
Respite care has an average cost of $78,840 a year, with monthly costs ranging from as little as $8,004 a month up to $14,355 a month. Respite care is another invaluable service to busy families, as it provides professional care to a senior for any length of time. If a familial caregiver needs to leave town for a bit, or has other responsibilities to take care of on a weekly basis, then respite care can fill in those gaps of care to the senior. Respite care can be done in-home of the senior, or the senior can take an available room at a respite care facility. Respite care is most useful when it is nearby, so seniors will want to make sure the town they're planning to move to has a respite care facility nearby.
U.S. Census Bureau, ACS 1-Year Estimates Subject Tables (2010, 2017 and 2018)
Annual rental cost, Zillow Rent Index, States
Job openings, pulled from Indeed.com and SimplyHired.com in April 2020
Employment and wages, Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2019 publication
Household income and population figures, U.S. Census Bureau, most recent publications on all topics