Skip to Content
You are here:

What's The Difference Between Senior Living Options?

filter form

Find a Community:

Filter By:
Advanced Search:

What's the Difference Between Senior Living Options?

Once you know that your loved one is in need of full-time support, a care home is the next step.  Although there are many reliable senior living options available, it can be confusing when it comes to the different types of senior housing options and care they offer. The are many different types of senior living facilities, like assisted living facilities and independent living centers. There are also types of senior housing options that cater to specific conditions, such as Alzheimer’s care communities.

It’s crucial that you know the difference between each of these options in order to choose the right living arrangement for your loved one.  Each senior living option offers something different that you should be aware of.


Assisted Living Facility

Assisted living facilities are best described as centers for seniors who can no longer live on their own, but don’t require daily nursing care.  However, family members can breathe easy, as there’s always a caregiver ready to assist residents with any tasks they may need a hand with. Your loved one will be able to choose his or her daily activities and own schedule – living in the best of both worlds.  

Although each state has its own requirements and regulations for licensing purposes, the services generally offered by assisted living centers are usually the same. According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, facilities generally consist of either individual bedrooms or apartment-style living arrangements.  Many senior living communities also offer stylish apartments with multiple floors to make your loved one feel that he or she is living in a normal neighborhood with the added support he or she needs.


Independent Living Centers

These are very similar to assisted living communities, providing neighborhoods where seniors can meet new people and live in a safe environment.  They work well for people who are able to live at home on their own, but don’t have family nearby or want to be surrounded by a group of like-minded individuals in the same stage of life. 

Your loved one will have the opportunity to join various groups and organizations to stay healthy and social. Living arrangements are usually the same as with assisted living, providing a comfortable setting.


Memory Care Communities

These communities are staffed with experts who have undergone specialized training to give your loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease the assistance he or she requires. 

Memory care residents usually live in small neighborhoods so that they’re surrounded by friends, but live in a quiet environment where they receive 24/7 support.  With these communities in particular, it’s important to make sure you’ve chosen a reputable senior care center to ensure your loved one’s well-being.


Explore More Helpful Resources

Caregiver FAQs

If you’ve recently become a family caregiver for an older loved one, you likely have many questions. Continue reading to find answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.

Learn More

Tough Conversations

There are various talks that caregivers will have to have with their loved ones that may cause resentment or frustration to surface. Continue reading for tips on how to prepare for these conversations.

Learn More
Back to top