When Is the Right Time to Plan a Move?
Making major decisions such as moving to a senior living community can be daunting. Often, we procrastinate to avoid making them. We tell ourselves “We will get to it tomorrow, next week, next month.” Of course, the right time for this decision is different for everyone but, generally, sooner is better than later. Below we highlight three reasons why you should start the process of exploring communities now in order to make informed decisions about your future.
- Make the decision yours. This will very likely be one of the last big life decisions you make, and you should be a part of that decision. Right now, you may be thinking to yourself “Well, of course I will be part of the decision.” Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Many people wait “until something happens” to their health before they decide. The problem with waiting until a medical wake-up call occurs is that many times whatever happens can limit your ability to make the decision for yourself. Do your research now and let your loved ones know your wishes should something happen to you. This will also give them one less thing to worry about regarding your care.
- Make an informed decision. Doing your research now and having a plan in place allows you to make an informed decision about your future. Waiting until you must move before researching your options can lead to a decision that will be made under duress. Making a quick decision may also lead to being unhappy where you are living. You may need to make another decision to move to a different community which can cause even more stress.
- Make sure the community you choose has availability. Every day until 2030 10,000 Baby Boomers will turn 65! It is estimated 7 out of 10 of those will require long term care at some point in their lives. So it should come as no surprise that many senior living communities have waitlists. To get on that waitlist may require a deposit that is usually refundable if you decide to go elsewhere. These waitlists often have a wait of a year or longer, which is why you should start researching your senior living options sooner rather than later. Wait too long and you may find that when you’re ready to move, there may not be any availability at the community you like best.
In the words of the great American philosopher Yogi Berra “If you don’t know where you are going, you will wind up someplace else.”
1. "2020 Census Will Help Policymakers Prepare for the Incoming Wave of Aging Boomers" (census.govopens in new window), site accessed 01/10/22.
2. 2020 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (https://acl.gov/ltc/basic-needs/how-much-care-will-you-needopens in new window). Site accessed01/10/22.