For a relaxed pace of life where you can enjoy hobbies and social activities, independent living can be a good option for retirees to provide their desired lifestyle. 

If you’re looking into your retirement options, or for a loved one, you may be considering independent living communities, but wondering about the costs and whether it is the right option for you. Designed for active seniors, independent retirement homes allow you to maintain your independence and privacy, while still receiving support and community amenities.

What is independent living?

Independent living offers seniors the freedom to maintain an active and social lifestyle, with the convenience of services such as housekeeping, prepared meals and ongoing support. 

Within a retirement community, living options range from private homes to apartments and suites. The main difference between independent living and other types of senior living is that the focus is not about providing regular medical care, or help with bathing and dressing, but with more emphasis on maintaining independence. Rest assured, however, that security and staff are on-hand to provide assistance for those who need it. 

Continual responsibilities such as household upkeep and cooking can become more challenging as you get older, so independent retirement homes are a good option for those who want to retain some level of independence, but also want to enjoy the convenience of housekeeping.

Different types of retirement living

There are different types of retirement homes and communities, with suites, apartments or townhouses, designed for resident independence. Often with 24-hour emergency help available, access to onsite services and facilities, and social activities. 

Due to the services offered, some options can be more expensive than others. When looking for an affordable retirement home, consider your needs and the kind of retirement lifestyle you want to enjoy. 

Senior apartments can offer many of the same amenities as senior living communities but generally come with limited services. They generally involve private apartments with shared common spaces for recreational activities and communal dining. This option can be more affordable than an independent unit within a retirement community. 

Continuing care retirement communities offer a wide spectrum of residential options, from independent living to nursing home care within one location. Seniors can enjoy the freedom of an active and social lifestyle, while still receiving support or medical care, with the option for long-term care if necessary. This option removes the need to relocate to a different home if your needs change. 

Independent living costs

Costs for independent living can vary depending on where you live and the retirement village

Those that offer a lot of amenities may have a higher price, but they provide significant benefits and quality of life that make them a good choice for many seniors. Some may include the cost of meals provided, and if you need to choose assisted living that provides personal care assistance and health services, it may have a higher price compared with independent living. 

Costs can often be higher in more desirable locations, with retirement homes in metropolitan areas sometimes having a higher cost. The size of the community can impact costs as well. For those wanting to be in close proximity to a bustling area with shops, parks and public transport nearby without being too close to the city, retirement villages in south east Melbourne, such as Evergreen, can be a good, affordable option. 

Independent retirement homes can be a good option for those wanting an affordable retirement home that still provides numerous benefits. 

What to consider when choosing a retirement home

Independent retirement homes will give you the independence and support you want. The type of retirement living that’s most suitable for you will depend on your requirement for assistance with medical needs and daily needs. 

When looking at independent retirement homes consider what services and amenities are important to you. This will help you determine if independent living is right for you. 

Retirement villages can provide a community for seniors, with amenities including a community centre and sports facilities that encourage socialisation and physical activity. If you have a furry companion you want to bring with you, you’ll need to choose a pet-friendly retirement village. 

Cleaning and home maintenance can become harder to manage for some seniors, while others may simply prefer to be able to focus on living a social and active lifestyle. Some communities may offer weekly cleaning services, home maintenance and repairs, as well as grounds keeping. 

Independent living is designed for seniors who still want an active lifestyle to focus on hobbies, friends and family, but do away with burdens on managing a home. It can be a budget-friendly option for seniors to enjoy retirement. 

Contact the team at Evergreen to learn more about our retirement community, and whether it’s the right place for you.