Searching online first can save time. While we would never recommend choosing a place based on a few nice photos you saw on a website (or rejecting one over a few bad reviews you read), you can certainly narrow down your options this way. If the community isn’t located in the area you’d prefer, or offers the services you need at the price you can afford — things you can easily determine online or by making a phone call to the community — it’s probably not worth the in-person visit.
Finding your best match requires some effort on your part. Before you take the plunge, determine what your priorities are. Make a list of the things that you’re willing to compromise on (location, perhaps) and what is a must-have for you (for example, a continuing care option). This post offers insights on Where to Spend and Where to Save.
When you have a list of several top choices, schedule an in-person visit at each one — and if you can make the time for a second, do it. Devote the first visit to evaluating their staff, care and services, and the second to evaluating the social atmosphere and sense of community there.
Read Why You Must Tour a Senior Living Community Before Saying “Yes” for more advice on finding your best senior living match.