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Choosing an Independent Living Community

There are many considerations when choosing an Independent Living community. Make sure the environment and provided care match you or your loved one’s personality and needs. Prepare a set of targeted questions and take a tour. Speak with the staff and residents and decide whether or not the location feels like a place that could be called home. Every community is unique, so spend some time investigating.

If you are still questioning your need for an Independent Living community, consider the home and personal care challenges you may have faced recently. During your visit, be sure to explore and articulate exactly what you are looking for so that the staff can detail a customized solution.

Below are some more things to consider when choosing a Senior Independent Living community:


  • Does the community have a homelike feel?
  • What are the living costs?
  • What services carry additional charges?
  • What are the payment policies?
  • Is there a waiting list? 
  • Can the staff assist with handling finances?
  • Is renter’s insurance required?
  • Is there a process for handling complaints?
  • Are the buildings and campus physically appealing?
  • Do residents appear comfortable, happy, and friendly?

Care & Services

  • How are a resident’s needs assessed?
  • What are the provided medical services?
  • Will my specific medical needs be met?
  • What occurs during a medical emergency?
  • If health conditions evolve, is the medial staff well prepared?
  • Do current residents look well cared for?
  • What types of independent services are available?


  • Is the staff friendly and happy?
  • Do they know residents by name?
  • Do relationships seem built on mutual respect?
  • Does the management team inspire confidence?
  • What training, experience, and qualifications do staff members have?


  • What types of rooms are available?
  • Are there grab bars in the bathrooms?
  • Are rooms and areas well identified?
  • Is there good lighting?


  • Are the rooms clean?
  • What is the cost of housekeeping services? What is their frequency?
  • What is the cost of laundry services? What is their frequency?
  • Does maintenance incur an additional charge?


  • What is the food selection?
  • Is food nutritious and home cooked?
  • What are the dining services?
  • What times are meals served?
  • Do they accommodate allergies and special dietary restrictions?
  • Does a dietician review the menus?
  • What happens when a resident unexpectedly misses a meal?

Social Programs

  • Are there a variety of activities offered?
  • Are you able to observe different activities?
  • Are activities popular among residents?
  • Are there many trips outside the community?
  • Do planned events and activities match your interests?
  • Are there many community volunteers? 
  • Is there additional cost for transportation?
  • What spiritual services are available?

Additional Questions

  • During emergencies, how do residents contact staff?
  • Are the exits easy to find?
  • Are there any special safety features in or around the building?
  • What is the process for moving out?
  • How far in advance is notification needed to move out?
  • Do all floors have an elevator?
  • What is the policy on pets?
  • Can I have my own car?
  • Can I come and go as I please?


Learn more about our senior communities in the Cleveland, Ohio area: Generations Senior Living of Berea and Generations Senior Living of Strongsville.