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Aging at Home vs. Senior Living: The True Cost Comparison

Date: May 16, 2024 | Article | Reading Time: 7 minutes

Is aging at home truly the most cost-effective option for your retirement? You might be surprised to discover the hidden expenses of maintaining your current lifestyle.

Here, we’ll compare the costs of staying in your home to the surprisingly affordable benefits of a senior living community. We’ll also explore the advantages of a rental community like The Delaney® at The Green, which gives you the freedom to live your best life without the burdens of homeownership or a large, upfront entrance fee.

Seven Hidden Costs of Aging at Home

You might think aging in your own home is the most cost-effective option, but have you considered all the hidden expenses? It’s more than just your mortgage or rent; it’s the whole picture that matters. Let’s break down some factors that can really add up:

1. Location Matters
Older homes in certain climates may be poorly insulated or have outdated appliances, causing energy bills to soar, unlike newer developments with energy-saving features.

Plus, some areas offer better senior healthcare resources and more affordable options than others. This can make a vast difference in both your health and finances.

2. Home Maintenance
If you own your home, you’re on the hook for every repair – leaky roof, new furnace, the list goes on. Remember, as your home ages, so do its needs and those costs associated with them.

Major home emergencies like burst pipes or storm damage aren’t just stressful; they can be financially devastating, especially if you don’t have ample savings.

3. Health and Care Needs
It’s natural that as we get older, we might need a little extra help. Home health aides, meal delivery, and transportation might seem like small things now, but these costs could skyrocket if you need a higher level of senior care in the future.

Managing chronic conditions or recovering from an illness can become overwhelming at home. It’s hard to predict how much additional support you might need as time goes on.

4. Your Fun Budget
Staying active, social, and pursuing what you love is key to happy aging! But travel, hobbies, and dining out can impact your bottom line.

Whether you dream of extended vacations, taking a painting class, or simply enjoying a nice meal out, these enriching experiences come with costs you typically wouldn’t pay for with a time-consuming career. It’s difficult to balance the cost of homeownership and having fun.

5. Yardwork
Yardwork isn’t just time-consuming but physically demanding, especially as you age. Hiring this service out adds another recurring cost.

There are also many seasonal costs to lawn maintenance. For example, watering your lawn in the summer to keep it lush significantly impacts your water bill. Strenuous chores in autumn, like gutter cleaning and leaf raking, can take hours of your time or money out of your pocket when you hire a professional lawn service.

6. Remodeling for Safety
As you age, you might need to make modifications to ensure safety and accessibility. These upgrades can be surprisingly costly. For instance, grab bars, walk-in tubs, and non-slip flooring can easily run into thousands of dollars.

Accommodating wheelchairs or walkers often requires significant structural changes, and many older homes may reveal hidden issues during the remodeling process, driving up costs even further.

7. An Active Lifestyle
Nutritious, whole foods are often more expensive than processed options. Rising food costs and shrinking packages make it even harder to balance health and a retirement budget.

And while a gym membership is great for your health, the fees plus commute time and gas money can add up throughout the year.

Our MoneyGauge™ Calculator Offers Clarity and Convenience

Understanding the financial aspect of senior living is crucial. To help simplify your search, The Delaney offers its own easy-to-use MoneyGauge™ calculator. It’s a fantastic tool for seniors (and their families) who are considering this new chapter, and here’s why:

  • Understanding Affordability: Our calculator helps you realistically compare the costs of aging at home with the expenses associated with senior living communities. They provide a clearer picture of financial feasibility before you start visiting places in person.
  • Identifying Potential Savings: It breaks down costs in detail (meals, utilities, etc.). You might discover you’re overspending on certain things at home, making senior living surprisingly more affordable.
  • Planning for the Future: The MoneyGauge™ calculator encourages you to consider potential future care needs and the associated costs for both aging at home and senior living. This helps with long-term financial planning.
  • Reducing Stress: Financial uncertainty is a major stressor. Our calculator provides data and helps you make informed decisions, reducing the anxiety of such a significant change.

6 Advantages of Senior Living

Senior living communities aren’t just about convenience; they’re about enhancing your retirement lifestyle in ways you might not even realize. Consider these advantages:

1. Predictable Expenses
Many senior communities offer inclusive pricing. This means your rent covers utilities, maintenance, amenities, and sometimes even meals – simplifying your monthly budget.

2. Maintenance-Free
Say goodbye to the stress of interior and exterior home repairs! Senior living takes care of it all, giving you back time and energy to invest in the thing you love.

3. Landscaping and Amenities
Enjoy a beautifully maintained property and access to features like libraries, fitness centers, or community social spaces just steps away from your residence. Not only will you be able to conveniently put wellness first, you’ll be able to merge the costs of a healthy lifestyle.

4. Dining Options
On-site dining venues free you from expensive grocery shopping and time-consuming cooking. At The Delaney, residents leave the cooking to us and enjoy delicious chef-inspired meals.

Choose from two dining options with a variety of menu items to suit any tastes and welcoming atmospheres that foster friendships and memories.

5. Residences Designed for Longevity
Unlike homes not built for aging, senior living communities are designed for safety and accessibility from the start. This means features like wider doorways, grab bars, and open floor plans.

6. Healthcare
At The Delaney, you have the peace of mind that comes with assisted living and memory care available on-site if your needs change. Our rental model gives you the freedom to pay for the level of care you need when you need it without a large upfront buy-in fee.

Why Seniors Love Rental Communities

If the idea of hefty buy-in fees or long-term commitments gives you pause, a rental senior living community could be the perfect solution.

Rental communities free you from the financial burden of homeownership while offering all the benefits of senior living – predictable expenses, a maintenance-free lifestyle, and on-site amenities.

Imagine spending more money in your pocket on travel, hobbies, or simply enjoy your retirement without the worries of home upkeep and unexpected costs.

Plus, a rental community allows you the flexibility to adapt to life’s changes. Whether you’re looking to try out senior living, downsize, or be closer to family, renting gives you the freedom to make the best decision for your future without the hassle of selling your home.

Reimagine Your Retirement, Redefine Your Freedom

The Delaney isn’t just about changing your address; it’s about unlocking a lifestyle of ease, convenience, and community. Leave homeownership headaches behind and embrace days filled with what you truly enjoy.

Contact our team online or call 973-784-8088 to schedule your personalized visit today and experience how our rental community can give you both financial flexibility and the freedom to live the retirement you’ve earned.