Integrated Family Community Services 3370 South Irving Street, Englewood, CO 80110-1816 Ph: 303-789-0501

Independent or Assisted Living? Which Is Best For Your Elderly Relative

While concerns associated with the care of aging relatives are not new, there are such an expanding number of facilities and services available today that the review process can be both exciting and confusing. When the family has determined that their loved-one is struggling with maintaining the same quality of life they have always known, it is time to consider an alternative senior-living residence. Popular options include Independent Living apartments or Assisted Living facilities. By properly evaluating the pros and cons of each, families can confidently guide their aging relative to choose the option that is right for them.

Independent or Assisted Living? Which Is Best For Your Elderly RelativeIndependent Living

This option includes senior rental apartments with minimum age restrictions and are available for those who have minimal health problems.

Positive Features

-Private apartment sized for easy maintenance.

-Personal furnishings and mementos are used.

-Security cameras on grounds.

-Transportation is available.

-Resident can cook their own meals or eat at a central dining hall.

-Resident can use on-site laundry facilities or staff laundry services.

-Housekeeping services if needed.

-Landscaping services provided.

-24-hour staff assistance if needed.

-Social activities available with other residents.

-Convenient access to beauty services.

-Parking available for personal vehicle.

-Active lifestyle without home maintenance concerns.

Possible Concerns

-Expensive rental fees that may include services not used by resident.

-Restrictions for visitors with children.

-Minimal health care assistance.

-Small apartment size may limit personalization.

Assisted Living

Assisted Living facilities are typically designed for aging adults who are no longer able to live independently and require various levels of daily health care.

Positive Features

-Apartment within main facility where personal furniture and belongings can be used.

-Health and personal care monitoring and services provided daily.

-Medication ordering and administration.

-Full housekeeping and laundry services available.

-Bathing assistance.

-Full meal services provided. Kitchens included in apartments for occasional meal preparation.

-Emergency pull cords throughout apartment.

-Escorted as needed to meals and other activities.

-Transportation to doctor appointments and activities.

-24-hour emergency and staff assistance.

-On-site guided social activities for residents.

-Daily staff check-ins.

-Basic first aid and nursing services provided.

-Improved quality of life.

-Peace of mind for family members.


Possible Concerns

-Significant cost for services needed.

-Difficulty transitioning from independent living to assisted living.

-Less flexibility – must conform to facility schedules for meals, transportation, and other services.

-Reduced privacy.

Today’s senior population wants to maintain an active lifestyle and enjoy a strong quality of life as long as possible. Retirement communities such as the one detailed at provide services to help residents age in place comfortably. Seniors and their families can be assured that when the time comes to consider a lifestyle change, there are options available to fit every need.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.
Tim Esterdahl

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