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What Is Assisted Living? Services, Cost, and Benefits

Find assisted living options

What is assisted living?

Assisted living is apartment-style housing for seniors who need help with tasks like bathing, dressing, and grooming. You may hear it called a residential care facility, long-term care facility, assisted living facility, or board and care home. While care is a big part of assisted living, these communities also offer activities and services to make life easy and enjoyable.

The benefits of assisted living

Assisted living provides a safe setting for seniors, giving both residents and families peace of mind. Caregivers are available 24/7 in case a resident needs assistance. Wide walkways and wheelchair access can be found throughout the building for added ease and safety.

 

While seniors can always enjoy the privacy of their apartment, assisted living communities provide lots of activities and social events. Options include game nights, happy hours, outings, fitness classes, clubs, and more. Seniors can be as active and social as they want to be. In general, staying engaged benefits seniors physically and mentally.

 

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What You Should Know About Assisted Living Services, Amenities, and Benefits

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AMENITIES

11 Benefits of Assisted Living for Seniors: 24-Hour Care, Friendship, Food, and More

Assisted living benefits include personalized, 24-hour care, activities, outings, and many chances to pursue interests.

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Beyond Bingo: The 50+ Best Activities for Seniors in Assisted Living

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Pet-Friendly Assisted Living: What to Know

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Signs it may be time for assisted living

You may not be sure if your loved one needs assisted living or can live at home safely. Look for signs of decline or changes in health or hygiene. If you’re caring for your loved one, you may find that you need more help. Some caregivers may notice that stress from this role is bad for their own health.

 

If you think it’s time to talk about assisted living, it’s best to make your loved one part of this discussion. Waiting until a fall or moving after a hospital visit makes it harder to find a good fit, and makes moving more stressful. It’s best to bring up assisted living sooner than later.

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11 Signs It Might Be Time for Assisted Living

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CAREGIVER SUPPORT

How to Talk to Elderly Parents About Assisted Living

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Let our care assessment guide you

Our free tool provides options, advice, and next steps based on your unique situation.

Assisted living services and features

Assisted living offers a social, active life for seniors who need help with daily tasks. Care is tailored to each senior’s needs and includes help with mobility, medication management, using the bathroom, and more. The services a community provides help seniors focus on what they enjoy instead of spending time on chores. Housekeeping, apartment maintenance, transportation, and laundry are usually offered.

Hub - help with personal care icon
On-site staff help residents with activities of daily living (ADLs), which include tasks such as eating, bathing, dressing, and toileting. Staff are trained to assist with ADLs based on each resident’s needs.

CARE OPTIONS

Understanding Assisted Living Levels of Care

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CHOOSING CARE

Dishing Up the Facts About Assisted Living Menus and Dining Options

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An Overview of Medication Policy and Procedure for Assisted Living

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Incontinence Care in Assisted Living: What to Know

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AMENITIES

Assisted Living Transportation: What's Provided for Residents?

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Assisted living vs. other types of senior living

Assisted living is a popular care type with a growing demand. When thinking about your senior care options, you’ll find many types of senior living. While other senior care types may offer similar services, there are important differences in the types and levels of care offered to residents.

 

Note that assisted living doesn’t provide medical care. If your loved one has a complicated or progressive health condition, you may need a nursing home.

AGING PARENTS

Assisted Living vs. Nursing Homes: Costs, Amenities, and How to Choose

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CARE OPTIONS

Assisted Living vs. Independent Living: What's the Difference?

The biggest differences between assisted and independent living include level of care, services, and cost.

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Assisted Living vs. Memory Care: 5 Key Differences

Learn the differences between these two care types and how to choose which best fits your loved one.

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Assisted Living vs. Board and Care Homes for Seniors: What’s the Difference?

Find out how residential care homes compare to assisted living communities in terms of costs, services, number of reside...

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Assisted living costs near me

Average cost comparisons near ,

Assisted living costs and payment

Assisted living costs vary from one community to the next. Key factors that determine costs include location, apartment size, and how much help your loved one needs. Different pricing models also affect costs. For example, while some assisted living facilities may be all-inclusive, others charge for services based on the senior’s needs.

 

Typically, an assisted living base fee covers rent, utilities, meals and snacks, housekeeping, transportation to doctor’s appointments, and social activities. Some outings or features may cost extra. Additional expenses may include help with personal care, internet, beauty and barber services, laundry, and pet fees.

COST

How Much Does Assisted Living Cost in 2024? Factors and Price Structure

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How to Pay for Assisted Living: A Comprehensive Guide

Go beyond retirement savings to stretch your assisted living budget. Roommates, veterans benefits, and life insurance ca...

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Where to Find the Cheapest Assisted Living in 2023

Explore which states have the lowest assisted living costs. Learn how costs are calculated and how location affects pric...

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Assisted Living Benefits for Veterans: A Comprehensive Guide 

Learn about the assisted living options available to veterans, veteran spouses, and surviving spouses.

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Does Medicaid Pay for Assisted Living?

Medicaid can help cover the costs of assisted living through a waiver program. Many families use multiple payment option...

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Touring and moving tips

You may feel overwhelmed with choices when it’s time to find an assisted living facility for your loved one. In this case, there’s nothing like visiting a community to see a typical day. Touring an assisted living facility lets you see the building, assess cleanliness, and witness staff interactions with residents. You may also try a meal, participate in activities, and talk to other residents. Most assisted living facilities also offer virtual tours if an in-person visit isn’t possible.


One strategy is to tour several communities yourself and then bring your parent to your top two choices. Keep in mind which communities are most likely to appeal to them. Once you’ve chosen a community, staff may refer you to move managers. They may also help remove the moving boxes once you’ve unpacked. If you’re stressed about moving day, consider finding expert assistance to help with this major transition.

CHOOSING CARE

6 Essential Steps to Take When Your Parents Need Assisted Living

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Finding Senior Living for Elderly Couples

Learn about senior living options for elderly couples, find average costs, and get tips on navigating care options.

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Questions to Ask Assisted Living Facilities When Touring

These questions for assisted living interviews can help you learn about the quality of a prospective facility’s amenitie...

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Moving to Assisted Living Checklist: Where to Start, What to Keep, and Everything in Betwe...

These assisted living moving tips and convenient checklist will help both you and your loved one stay organized before, ...

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5 Tips to Help Your Parent Transition to Assisted Living

Downsizing from a lifelong home to an assisted living community can be stressful. Use these moving and logistics tips fo...

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A Place for Mom has the largest network of senior living communities and home care providers in the nation. We enable caregivers to make the best decisions for their loves ones.

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Assisted Living

Assisted living facilities offer housing and care for active seniors who may need support with activities of daily living, like bathing, dressing, and medication management.

The score shown is the overall experience rating which is an average of the reviews submitted for those communities. The overall experience rating is a star rating that ranges from 1 being the lowest to 5 being the highest.

Below are the 51 largest cities grouped by their metropolitan area.

Top states for Assisted Living

8.2
Alabama, AL
299 facilities
7.1
Alaska, AK
60 facilities
7.8
Arizona, AZ
962 facilities
7.6
Arkansas, AR
138 facilities
8.1
California, CA
3380 facilities
7.7
Colorado, CO
424 facilities
8.5
Connecticut, CT
173 facilities
8.4
Delaware, DE
41 facilities
7.8
8.0
Florida, FL
2029 facilities
8.0
Georgia, GA
824 facilities
4.7
Hawaii, HI
39 facilities
7.6
Idaho, ID
185 facilities
8.1
Illinois, IL
696 facilities
8.0
Indiana, IN
482 facilities
7.4
Iowa, IA
478 facilities
7.9
Kansas, KS
322 facilities
8.0
Kentucky, KY
274 facilities
7.8
Louisiana, LA
125 facilities
7.7
Maine, ME
144 facilities
8.0
Maryland, MD
367 facilities
8.1
Massachusetts, MA
350 facilities
7.9
Michigan, MI
1074 facilities
7.3
Minnesota, MN
880 facilities
7.8
Mississippi, MS
189 facilities
7.5
Missouri, MO
524 facilities
7.0
Montana, MT
135 facilities
7.7
Nebraska, NE
310 facilities
8.4
Nevada, NV
121 facilities
8.3
New Hampshire, NH
100 facilities
8.2
New Jersey, NJ
362 facilities
8.1
New Mexico, NM
137 facilities
8.2
New York, NY
521 facilities
7.7
North Carolina, NC
702 facilities
7.2
North Dakota, ND
101 facilities
8.0
Ohio, OH
926 facilities
8.2
Oklahoma, OK
248 facilities
7.2
Oregon, OR
601 facilities
7.9
Pennsylvania, PA
1094 facilities
8.2
Rhode Island, RI
66 facilities
8.2
South Carolina, SC
400 facilities
7.0
South Dakota, SD
127 facilities
8.3
Tennessee, TN
452 facilities
8.3
Texas, TX
1378 facilities
7.9
Utah, UT
167 facilities
8.2
Vermont, VT
59 facilities
8.2
Virginia, VA
490 facilities
8.1
Washington, WA
1400 facilities
9.0
West Virginia, WV
58 facilities
7.5
Wisconsin, WI
1132 facilities
4.1
Wyoming, WY
47 facilities

The information contained on this page is for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical, legal, or financial advice or create a professional relationship between A Place for Mom and the reader. Always seek the advice of your health care provider, attorney, or financial advisor with respect to any particular matter, and do not act or refrain from acting on the basis of anything you have read on this site. Links to third-party websites are only for the convenience of the reader; A Place for Mom does not endorse the contents of the third-party sites.