Is Independent Living the Right Retirement Choice for Me?

If you’re a senior who is active and mobile, who is looking for a more convenient lifestyle, and who is seeking more social opportunities, then a move to independent living in your retirement may be what you’re looking for.

  • Do you ever feel like you’re “rattling around” in your current home? Here are some of the reasons independent living may be a good fit for you.
  • Things like property maintenance, housekeeping, and laundry are looked after for you. This will allow you to spend more time on things that are meaningful to you.
  • If you don’t want to have to cook for yourself every day of the week, you’ll be able to eat in restaurant-style dining facilities within your new community.
  • Independent living comes in many forms – apartments, cottages, townhouses, and single detached houses – all of which have senior-friendly design features that make it easier for you to age in place.
  • There are lots of opportunities to make new friends. That’s because independent living communities often have organized social and recreational programs.

The current state of your home – and how suitable it is for growing older there – should be a consideration. Take a minute to assess your home to help you decide if it’s worth staying or if an independent living community is a better option:

Would It Be Helpful to Have Assistance in These Areas?

Area Yes No
Meal Preparation
Laundry/ Linens
Bill Paying
Personal Care
Bathing/ Showering
Daily Grooming
Medication Reminders
Medication Administration

Are These Social Interactions Important to You?

You’ll also want to ask yourself how important social activities are to you, and if living at home either helps or hinders your ability to enjoy activities:

Activity Yes No
Spending time with friends
Spending time with family
Attending religious services
Going shopping
Attending cultural events
Participating in favorite hobbies
Artistic pursuits
Lifelong Learning
Spending time with children
Spending time with pets/ animals
Spending time outdoors
Spending time outdoors

Independent living isn’t for everyone. In particular, it’s not designed for seniors with cognitive challenges or chronic health conditions that require ongoing care. Independent living communities don’t provide healthcare or assistance with daily activities such as medication, bathing, eating, dressing or toileting.

That said, some independent living communities are part of larger senior living communities that also include housing for seniors who need assisted living or memory care. Many independent living residents find this reassuring. They know that if they require more support as they get older, they’ll have the option of moving to assisted living or memory care without necessarily having to leave the community and the people they’ve come to know.

Deciding to leave your current home can be difficult, but many seniors who have gone ahead and made the move to independent living in their retirement are glad they did.

More information

For more information about independent living in your retirement, take a look at our free booklet, Just the Facts: Your Guide to Independent Living.

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