The Myths of Living in a Life Plan Community, Debunked
If you’ve looked into your options for retirement, you’ve probably come across the concept of a Life Plan Community (LPC). This innovative option for senior living is designed for senior adults who are seeking opportunities to live an active, social, and fulfilling lifestyle while maintaining their health and independence as they age.
However, if you ask someone what they think a Life Plan Community is, chances are they might tell you something completely different—and the reason is simple. There are a lot of misconceptions floating around. Fortunately, we’re here to debunk some of the more commonly held LPC myths.
Myth 1: My current home is the best place to spend my retirement years.
Reality: What we need from a home changes as our lives change.
Think back to the various places you’ve lived throughout your adult life. Perhaps it started with a college dorm, and then graduated into an apartment or small home, and then into something a bit larger to accommodate a growing family. In every instance, your home served to fulfill the lifestyle needs you met at every stage along the way. Now, as you shift into retirement, you may be trying to assess whether another move is necessary or not—and it’s a decision many are reluctant to grapple with. However, deciding where to live as we age often requires thinking outside the comforts of familiarity and, instead, considering future needs, especially as it relates to your health, security, and peace of mind.
Within a Life Plan Community, not only will you find an abundance of maintenance-free amenities, social opportunities, and greater access to higher levels of care (should you or a loved one need it), but you will also discover greater independence and relief from the burdens and obligations of keeping up with the family home—giving you more free time to pursue the things you really want to do in retirement.
Myth 2: Life Plan Communities are too institutional.
Reality: Life Plan Communities actually offer a much more active and comprehensive living experience.
There is a common misconception that Life Plan Communities are nursing homes or care centers. In fact, one visit to an LPC and you’ll quickly discover “institutional” is the last word you would use to describe the environment. In all actuality, these communities are vibrant communities offering private, independent apartment homes, spacious common areas, a host of amenities and lifestyle opportunities, chef-led restaurants, and much more.
However, what really sets a Life Plan Community apart is the higher levels of care offered right on campus, including assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing. Access to these services is provided in an effort to create a fulfilling living experience that delivers the peace of mind and security of having a home for life.
Myth 3: It’s easy to get any care I may need at home.
Reality: Planning for future health and care needs can be difficult.
Many people assume it will be easier and less expensive to age in place at home. This is, of course, a personal preference and will depend largely on your unique situation and needs. However, one thing is fairly certain. Planning for your future health needs can be difficult to predict. This is especially true when you consider what home care services will be available, what special accommodations will be necessary for extended or round-the-clock care, and what home modifications may need to be made.
As previously mentioned, one of the hallmark benefits of a Life Plan Community is the commitment to providing a home for life, regardless of what your future long-term care needs may be. Having higher levels of care right at your doorstep not only eliminates the worry of having to move again, but also offers peace of mind in knowing you or your loved ones won’t be faced with the undue burden of future planning or managing care.
Myth 4: My current home is the best option to continue living an active social life.
Reality: Social isolation becomes more common as we age.
Retirement is a time to be celebrated, full of opportunities to pursue lifelong passions and new interests. But it also comes with an intimidatingly large amount of free time, as well as a sudden decrease in social outlets. This abundance of time paired with less human contact can lead many to live somewhat isolated lives, or experience feelings of loneliness on a regular basis.
Among the many advantages of living in a Life plan Community is the ability meet and regularly interact with fellow residents who are in your same stage of life and share similar interests. Additionally, by offering a vibrant and welcoming community full of organized activities, social groups, clubs, classes, and even opportunities for volunteering and service, LPCs succeed at providing ways to build meaningful relationships and foster a fulfilling sense of purpose.
Myth 5: Life Plan Communities are full of old people who can’t take care of themselves any longer.
Reality: The majority of Life Plan Community residents are healthy, active, and independent.
While Life Plan Communities offer different levels of care for people at every stage of life, you’ll find the majority of residents to be healthy seniors who are simply looking for the best opportunities to live the active, independent, and maintenance-free lifestyles they desire. Additionally, Life Plan Communities are designed to deliver successful aging, often producing healthier outcomes as a result. This means, it makes more sense for residents to move in sooner, rather than later, in order to take full advantage of everything that is offered.
Myth 6: You can’t work.
Reality: Working has never been prohibited in a Life Plan Community.
Just because a Life Plan Community is labelled a “retirement community” doesn’t mean you have to hang up your career at the door. More and more people are opting to work as long as they can, even after making the move into an LPC. And with many of these communities offering helpful services and amenities, such as Wi-Fi, meeting rooms, parking, and more, the ability to work may even seem a little easier, if not more accommodating.
There are also countless opportunities to lend volunteer service within Life Plan Communities, providing residents with a way to stay connected, maintain a sense of purpose, and remain actively engaged in the greater community.
While the benefits of living in a Life Plan Community are endless, the decision to move should not be done in a rush. Take your time to research, ask questions, and make personal visits. If you’re just starting your search for a senior living community or just considering your options, visit SummitVista.com to request your free information kit.