Having to make the decision to place mom or dad in an assisted living facility is rarely easy. Horror stories from the media, guilt and financial concerns often turn a very logical decision into one that is fraught with conflicting emotions. Remembering every consideration when choosing an assisted living facility can be difficult when the aforementioned factors come into play.

When visiting and touring senior living facilities be sure to note the upkeep of both common and private areas, the attitude of staff members towards the residents, the ease at which residents can move around and how their needs are met. Be sure to visit several facilities to ensure that you get full knowledge of what is available. Take along this list of questions to ask at each facility to ensure that you get all of the answers you need to make an educated decision:

  1. Is the facility licensed? Contact the state’s licensing department to ensure that the facility is in good standing and is adhering to licensing requirements.
  2. How long has this facility been in operation? Newer facilities mean more amenities and conveniences but may employ more non-permanent employees.
  3. What are your requirements for hiring? Though requirements vary from state to state, you’ll want to check on whether or not background checks are performed and what education or training is expected of potential hires.
  4. What does your health and wellness program consist of? Gone are the days of seniors languishing around the old folks home. Today’s senior care facilities often include comprehensive health and wellness programs that encourage physical exercise programs and nutrition education to keep residents healthier and happier.
  5. What kind of contract is required? Request to review a copy of the contract and carefully assess each of the monthly terms and which may need to be negotiated before signing.