Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Housing Options When Your Spouse is Ill

Whether Baby Boomers like to think about it or not, you could reach retirement age and discover that either you or your spouse has a health or mobility issue that may make it difficult to live comfortably and safely in your current home or in the typical over-55 community.  Because of that, I thought it would be helpful to talk about some of the other living arrangements that are available as we age.

Remodeling Your Current Home

Probably the most common option is to simply remodel the place where you currently live.  Many people will make the necessary accommodations for their spouse for as long as they can.  They may add a chair lift to help them get up and down the stairs.  Ramps can be added to front doors, bars and walk-in bathtubs can be added to bathrooms, and other adjustments can be added to homes to make them handicap accessible.

People can also buy and lease hospital beds, wheelchairs, and other items that will make it easier for family members with mobility issues.

However, there are some problems that you may not be able to deal with by simply remodeling your current home.  For example, if you have a loved one with dementia, you could be concerned about what the future might bring.  Will they wander away from the house when you're not watching, or leave a burner on while they are trying to cook?  If the ill partner has physical problems and is unable to stand up, will the caregiver spouse be able to help them shower or perform other daily tasks?

In situations like these, the couple may decide that they need to move to a location where they can stay together but get some assistance.


Assisted Living Communities Like Garden Spot Village

When I posted last year about Garden Spot Village in the Lancaster County area of Pennsylvania, I revealed a community that has housing options that range from independent living villas and apartments to assisted living and dementia care options.  This community also features an indoor swimming pool, garden atrium, post office and branch bank in the main building.  There are exercise classes, art programs and a variety of interesting activities available daily.  This tremendous community is ideal for people who want to move somewhere while they are still healthy and remain there as they age and need more assistance.  A couple can both live there even if one does not need assistance but their partner does.

This wonderful community, however, is only one example of the many types of similar facilities that are available across the country.  Many Baby Boomers will want to seriously consider moving to one of these communities, especially if they or their spouse has a chronic illness that could limit their ability to live independently in the coming years.

Holiday Homes

An option that is similar to Garden Spot Village, but more widely available, is offered by Holiday Homes, a company that has over 300 communities across the United States and Canada.  All of them offer independent living apartments and about 70 of the communities also offer separate cottages for those people who do not need personal assistance at this time.

There are certain advantages offered by organizations like Holiday that can make their communities especially appealing to aging Boomers.  In particular, you may be interested in the Holiday Touch Travel Program that allows you to stay up to seven nights per visit in one of their other communities in the United States or Canada.  Your guest room, meals and other amenities are included at no additional charge beyond what you are paying to stay in your home residence.  This is perfect if you occasionally want to travel to a warm location during the winter or go visit your grandchildren in another part of the country.

Holiday communities offer meals prepared by a chef and served in a restaurant style dining room, a variety of activities, including outings and exercise classes, 24-hour assistance for those who need it, on-site dementia facilities, and personal security.  Every apartment is equipped with an emergency call system.

These are not sterile nursing homes, but true residential living facilities.  You are encouraged to bring your own furniture and decorate your apartment however you choose.  There is no long-term commitment.  You pay a monthly rental fee based on the services you need ... for example, whether you or your spouse needs any assisted living services. 

There are Holiday communities in nearly every state in the continental United States, as well as several in Canada.  Whether you want to live near your family and friends, or you wish to move somewhere warm like Florida, Arizona or Southern California, there is almost certain to be a location that will meet your needs.

To get more information or arrange a visit, use the phone number or website below: 

1-800-322-0999
http://www.holidaytouch.com/senior-living
http://www.holidaytouch.com/senior-living/independent-senior-living

If you are interested in other interesting places to live, use the tabs at the top of this article to find links to more articles about wonderful places to retire in the United States and overseas, as well as additional information of interest to retirees.

You are reading from the blog:  http://www.baby-boomer-retirement.com

(Public domain photo of an artist painting is courtesy of www.morguefile.com)

2 comments:

  1. Holiday Homes is a unique option for boomers who need an occasional change of scenery. Thanks for sharing this interesting information.

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    1. Thank you, Diva, for your comments. I think Holiday Homes is an interesting possibility that could work well for many retirees ... no long-term leases, and you can stay temporarily in other locations. Eventually, I may devote a post entirely to them, although I will want to do a little more research first.

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