What is a continued care retirement community (CCRC)?
A CCRC allows older adults to age in place during their stages of aging. CCRCs include a full continuum of care options allowing residents to live on the premises for the rest of their lives as their needs change. Unlike most of the other options, CCRCs include:
Independent Living: Residents can live independently in an apartment or studio.
Nursing Homes, also known as Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNFs): Residents with more serious medical conditions receive 24-hour medical and non-medical care.
Short-Term Rehabilitation: Residents receive 24-hour medical and non-medical care while they recover from surgery, accident, or severe illness. Care is temporary, and once the resident recovers, they return to their prior living situation.
Memory Care: Residents with dementia or Alzheimer’s who need a higher level of care with trained staff who specialize in memory care.
Transportation to medical appointments and shopping
Wellness and fitness programs
Recreational activities, including a wide range of social activities and outings for residents
Common areas for residents to interact and socialize
Who would be interested in continued care retirement communities?
Anyone age 60 or above.
Anyone wanting a community to handle all life’s needs.
Couples with different needs but want to live on the same property. For example, a spouse qualifies for independent living while the other needs a higher level of care, such as Skilled Nursing or Memory Care.
Option 2 – Straight rental model: Residents pay no up-front fees but a monthly fee. The average monthly charge for both communities is $3,555, with an average annual rent increase of 2%.
The various contracts.
Community care retirement communities have various contracts that are notoriously complex, so run them by an attorney before signing. The top three arrangements are:
An extensive life-care contract, which is the most expensive, offers a full range of services, including unlimited assisted living, medical treatment, and skilled nursing costs for little or no additional charges.
The modified contract offers limited services, and anything beyond those services incurs a higher monthly fee.
Fee-for-service contract has the lowest enrollment fees, but residents pay for specific services needed, such as assisted living, skilled nursing, or memory care.
Health insurance does not cover the costs of continued care in retirement communities. Therefore, these costs are out-of-pocket unless you have a long-term care policy to help pay. Talk to a financial advisor or life insurance broker regarding potential policies.