Age Wise, a research company, found there were five common myths among the 65 and older population concerning moving to a senior living community. We are debunking each myth over the course of a couple of weeks. This week’s myth is “Senior Living is Too Expensive.”
Myth #3: Senior Living Is Too Expensive
The third myth identified by Age Wave, the research and consulting company that studied the 65+ age group perceptions of Senior Living, is, “It is less expensive for me to stay in my home.”
In today’s financial world, dealing with real-estate is particularly confusing. Most Seniors have lived through a lifetime of accelerating property values. It is considered a core value of life to own a home AND to pay off the mortgage.
Homeownership comes with many joys and burdens. About the time the mortgage is paid off, it’s time for a major remodel, paint job, or a new roof. Continued upkeep is vital to maintain the property value.
For older people, it becomes more challenging to manage the upkeep, including the exterior and landscaping. The value of the property may be deteriorating even in the best market.
Is Owning A Home Really Less Expensive Than Living In A Retirement Community?
Consider that the following expenses that may be associated with staying in your own home. Even if it is paid for and there is no mortgage, there are annual expenses that continue year after year. Mortgage lenders remind homebuyers that in all, the hidden costs of owning a home run about $11,000 a year for the average homeowner.
- property tax
- maintenance and repairs
- appliance upgrades
- security system
- lawn care and landscaping
- exercise and health equipment
- groceries for meals
This would not include significant maintenance issues like a new roof or kitchen or bathroom remodels. These expenses would be ongoing if a person stayed healthy and independent.
If The Time Comes Where Extra Healthcare Support Is Needed Even In The Home, The Price Increases Dramatically.
Hiring caregivers or private duty to come into you home averages $22 per hour with a typical minimum of 3 hours a day. That could quickly run $800 to $1000 a month. All the while, you are paying the home expenses.
The national median cost for Assisted Living is approximately $4000 a month, which breaks down to $133 per day or $48,000 per year. This living arrangement would include all of the normal home expenses, including all meals and 24/7 medical staff in case of emergencies.
Suddenly The Difference Between Living In Your Home With Hired Care And Moving To An Assisted Living Community Is Very Comparable.
Worries about home maintenance are eliminated, and there is more time to enjoy family and new friends.
To be absolutely sure of the finances, an individual or family member should create a balance sheet putting all current expenses living at home and expenses living in a community. That would help clarify the issue.
Many Seniors Live On A Fixed Income.
Because many Seniors live on a combination of Social Security, pensions, retirement funds, equity derived from the sale of real estate, it is comforting to know that there will be no major surprises in homeownership for the future. Being able to forecast expenses is very comforting. And what is peace of mind worth? Priceless!