If you’re exploring your senior living options, you know there are a lot of choices out there, and each choice seems to have a different price tag. When it comes to fully understanding the costs for independent living in Houston, TX, how do you know which senior living community is a good value for you?
This blog post will look at what independent living communities offer and explore why the cost of a community can vary. It will also explore what it takes to stay in your current home.
Cost of Living in a Community
Determining how much independent living costs in Houston, TX, depends on a number of factors. Is there an entrance fee and/or monthly fee? What types of services and amenities does the fee cover? Does that include future health care?
The Buckingham is a Life Care community, and our entrance fee guarantees you access to a full-continuum of on-site care — assisted living, memory care, skilled nursing, rehabilitation — if ever needed. Our Life Care contract means any needed level of care will be available at a predictable monthly rate. Because these fees represent a charge or prepayment for future health care, they could be tax deductible. Talk with your accountant or tax advisor for more specific information about how much you could potentially save.
For comparison, here are the 2021 average costs for higher levels of care in the Houston area according to Genworth Financial:
- Assisted living: $4,750/month
- Skilled nursing semiprivate room: $7,756/month
- Skilled nursing private room: $8,821/month
Plus, your monthly service fee covers a variety of services such as regular nutritious meals, interior and exterior maintenance, household utilities, housekeeping, scheduled transportation, and a wide variety of activities and events.
Staying in Your Current Home
When asked, most older adults would prefer to stay in their current home. But even if your mortgage is paid off, living at home is far from free. You still have normal expenses, including
monthly utilities, groceries, landscaping, housekeeping services, and home insurance and property taxes. Then there’s expected maintenance — like painting and carpeting — and unexpected big-ticket expenses — like plumbing problems, appliance issues, and even a new roof or HVAC. You may also have entertainment costs and gym memberships. As you can see, it can all add up pretty fast.
And that doesn’t include the cost of modifying your house to make it easier and safer for you to live in. Consider the cost of adding:
- Grab bars
- Improved lighting
- Wider doorways
- Safer flooring options
- Easy-grip doorknobs
You may even need to remodel your kitchen and bathroom. Plus, if you plan to age in place, you could eventually need to engage in-home health care providers. According to Genworth Financial, the 2021 monthly cost of hiring an in-home health aid for 44 hours a week is $4,290.
According to Zillow, the average price of a house in Houston is $231,236. But the Houston metro area is very large, so the value of your house could be much higher. Consult with your real estate agent to get an idea of what houses are going for in your neighborhood. Seniors who own their home can use the proceeds from the sale of their house to move into a community.
The Added Benefits of Community Living
Moving to a maintenance-free independent living community gives you access to an active and engaging lifestyle with friendly neighbors who share your interests. It’s also probably more affordable than you think.
At The Buckingham — Houston’s premier Life Care community — our culture is second to none — with top-notch services and amenities, and a world of opportunity for you to explore. You can learn more about our friendly senior living lifestyle by contacting us here.