Know Your Options: What Are Senior Independent Living Apartments?

February 28, 2020

As a homeowner or someone who has been living on your own, you might hesitate to make a move into a senior living community. Some people have a negative impression of these communities, worrying that this type of living situation might mean sacrificing independence, an active lifestyle, and all the comforts of home. 

The way we age is changing—we’re remaining active longer, choosing to continue traveling, enjoying the outdoors, engaging in hobbies, and socializing. We continue to value our independence as we age, and don’t want to get stuck in a “home” that feels like anything but. Luckily, senior living is changing, too. Independent living apartments provide the perfect environment for seniors who want to maintain their lifestyle while surrounding themselves with like-minded people.

What are senior independent living apartments?

Unlike the senior living facilities of old, senior independent living apartments offer modern living arrangements for active seniors who want to take full advantage of retirement. If you currently live on your own, with your spouse, with a friend, or with a pet, senior independent living allows you to maintain your current living arrangement while taking advantage of many conveniences. 

There are multiple options for seniors who are interested in continuing to live on their own but who wish to downsize and live in a community with other seniors. Independent living apartments are one of the most popular options, while age-restricted apartment communities are another. Don’t be fooled: these are two different living arrangements, with core differences. In a word, that difference is amenities. 

An age-restricted community is just that—essentially, it’s just an apartment complex or mobile home community where all of the residents are ages 55+. These age-restricted communities still leave you with all of the responsibilities of homeownership or apartment rental. Independent living apartments, on the other hand, include services to make it easy to focus on enjoying retirement. Housekeeping and maintenance—both indoor and outdoor—are taken care of by the community rather than the resident. 

What are the benefits of senior independent living apartments?

In addition to not having to worry about maintenance and housekeeping, senior independent living apartments offer additional resort-style amenities that make everyday living feel like a mini-vacation. At Aviva, our residents take advantage of on-site fitness facilities, fine and casual dining options, a salon, a heated pool, and lush grounds with tropical-landscaped walking paths through our 27 acres. There are also group activities such as fitness classes, happy hours, lectures, and more so you can socialize with other residents who share your interests. 

Independent living apartments give you the flexibility to age in place over time, and on your own terms. You can choose the apartment floor plan that best fits your needs, whether that’s a studio, one-bedroom, or two-bedroom layout. Almost all of our floor plans include an in-apartment kitchen, so you can choose whether you want to cook your favorite recipes or take advantage of our available dining options.

With on-site medical services and transportation to other specialist appointments, you can continue to stay healthy and use your favorite doctors and medical providers. As you age and your needs change, you have the flexibility to move into assisted living, memory care, or skilled nursing on the same campus you’ve grown to love. 

What’s the cost difference between living alone and senior independent living? 

Many people look at the price tag associated with senior independent living apartments and experience sticker shock. In fact, when you add up the monthly expenses of homeownership or apartment rental, many people actually save quite a bit of money when they make the move into senior independent living. 

To truly compare the cost of independent living and your current living situation, add up everything you’re paying every month for:

  • Mortgage or rent
  • Property taxes
  • Utilities: 
    • Water and sewage
    • Electricity and gas
    • Trash pickup
    • Cable, internet, and phone
  • In-home maintenance
  • Lawn care services, including snow removal in colder climates
  • Transportation, including car payments and gas
  • Gym memberships and fitness classes
  • Recreational activities
  • Meals out at restaurants

Once you add up these costs, you might be surprised at how much you actually spend every month to maintain your current lifestyle. Unlike other senior living communities, Aviva doesn’t require an initial buy-in fee—monthly rent covers all of the amenities and services we offer. You have a variety of options to pay for senior independent living, and can choose the floor plan and living arrangement that best fits your budget. 

Choosing a senior independent living apartment

If you’re considering making a lifestyle change, senior independent living apartments present a great option to make the most of your retirement. Take the stress of home maintenance, lawn care, and transportation off your plate so you can focus on doing the things that matter—golfing and exercising, attending classes and seminars for lifelong learning, socializing and making new friends, and generally enjoying life. 

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