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The Six Most Important Things to Consider when Selecting an Assisted Living (Part Two)
Long-term Costs of Assisted Living
Cost is, unfortunately, the most important consideration when shopping for an assisted living community. Assisted living costs can be quite expensive; however, it is possible to find wonderful care without breaking the bank. The approximate costs of licensed assisted livings in the Albuquerque metro area are:
-$2800 – 4500 a month for a shared room in a residential home;
-$3000 – 5500 a month for a private room in a residential home;
-$3000 – 5000 a month for a private apartment plus the cost of care ($200 – 2500/month) in a larger assisted living community, depending on care needs; and
-$4000 – 7000 for memory care, depending on care needs.
In general, residential homes include the cost of all care in their monthly fees. As care needs increase over time, fees generally will not increase. In larger assisted livings, the cost of an apartment or room includes all meals, utilities, housekeeping, laundry, activities and transportation. The cost of care (i.e. assistance with bathing, dressing, incontinence care, transferring, medication management, etc.) is an extra required monthly fee based on the individual client’s needs. This model’s primary advantage is that the client only pays for the level of care they need at the time. As care needs increase in larger assisted livings, monthly fees will increase as well.
When determining what model makes most sense for a loved one, evaluating the long-term budget is key to minimize additional transitions down the road as financial resources diminish. When the budget is limited, residential homes are usually best because one can anticipate what monthly fees will be over time. If resources are plentiful, a larger community that may increase in cost over time may be a better option. The goal should be to make one move into an appropriate assisted living for the long term. Moving is never easy for anyone, let alone if dementia is involved, so minimizing the number of moves is essential. Please be conservative and consider the long-term assisted living costs when deciding on what model makes most sense for your loved one.
Keep your eyes peeled for a future newsletter/blog dedicated to financing the cost of assisted living.