Senior Citizen's Guide digital books
Senior Citizen's Guide

How to Select a Continuing Care Retirement Community

One popular option is the continuing care retirement community, or CCRC. This type of community is different from other housing and care options for older people because it offers a long-term contract that provides for housing, services and nursing care, usually all in one location.

At the same time, CCRCs offer some distinct advantages, including physical and financial security, independence and access to health care, companionship of friends and neighbors of similar age and access to community facilities and privacy. The CCRC's emphasis on the individual, coupled with a supportive environment, allows you to continue to pursue your lifelong interests.

There are many different options in the CCRC industry. Consider the community size when making your decision; do you prefer a large community with many options and services, or something smaller and more individualized? Would you prefer a more "formal" environment, or are you a casual person at heart? There are CCRCs of all types and sizes, and you should find one where you will feel most at home. If you have decided that a CCRC is the best option for yourself or a family member, it is best to visit a few facilities.

Find out what kinds of services the facility offers and which ones are included at no extra cost. Sometimes, extra services are available for additional fees.

Inquire as to what kinds of contracts are available to you. The CCRC contract is a legal agreement between you (the consumer) and a continuing care retirement community. This agreement generally secures living accommodations and services, including health care services, over the long term. The most common types of CCRC agreements are:

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