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Choosing the right senior living community that meets your needs

active seniors enjoying

Looking for the right senior living community for yourself or a loved one can be challenging. With so many available options for long-term care, finding one that accommodates all of your requirements and preferences is not exactly an easy task.

Taking time to do research is always a smart move before making any major decisions. To be successful, you need to gather the right information from senior living communities.

If you’re searching for senior living communities in Los Angeles, here’s what you need to know:

Level of care

One of the first things you need to find out is the level of care you or your loved one needs. This is a key factor that will affect your decision on selecting the right community.

The options available are generally separated into three different categories:

  • Skilled nursing – This option is typically for residents who can no longer take care of themselves, and require help from a nurse or nursing assistance round-the-clock. Residents here are usually assigned in separate rooms, with roommates in some arrangements.
  • Assisted living – Assisted living communities are for residents who typically need assistance with some activities in their daily lives, such as dressing, bathing, cooking, or knowing when they need to take their medication. Residents in these communities are usually in apartments or private rooms, and are provided with meals. Nurses or nursing assistants check on each residents during different times of the day.
  • Independent living – Also referred to as “active adult communities,” this type of community is designed for residents who can take care of themselves, but prefer the convenience of having someone else in charge of tasks such as cleaning and cooking, in addition to being in the company of other residents who are more less their age. Different services are offered depending on the community, and there’s usually no staff providing nursing care or checking on residents every day. People in independent living communities typically live in private condos and apartments.


Safety is another important factor to consider when choosing a senior living community. Every community must abide by certain standards, rules, and regulations. To check on the quality of care provided by a specific nursing home, visit this page.

For assisted or independent living communities, the government does not have a website where you can check safety regulations or quality for each community. However, you can get in touch with your state licensing agency or the Better Business Bureau to get more information.


Find out what type of maintenance is provided for residents. If you’re looking forward to the convenience offered in a senior living community, you want to know what type of maintenance tasks or repairs are handled.

While there are some communities that include all maintenance as part of their monthly fee, others require additional fees for repairs or maintenance work performed on housing units. There are also some communities which charge extra fees for regular checks on homes in case residents are away from the community for extended periods of time.


After you’ve done your research on the basics, you can then find out whether the community will be a good fit for you or your loved one’s lifestyle. For example, some communities have restrictions against pets, so if you’re a pet owner, this is something you’ll want to know ahead of time.

Every community has an established set of rules which all residents need to follow. Take time to look at the rules and regulations set by communities before you make your final decision. This will help you avoid any unexpected surprises, as there are some communities which impose unusual rules like prohibiting residents from planting a small garden, banning outdoor grilling, and so on.

Recreational options

Most top-rated senior living communities provide terrific recreational opportunities for its residents. Facilities and amenities dedicated to recreation are important, as they promote socialization and give residents something to look forward to each day.

Ask if you can talk to current residents of the community so you can get information on the recreation activities offered. You want a community that provides a complete recreation schedule, offering many different opportunities that accommodate various interests as well as levels of mobility.

Additionally, you’ll need to find out which activities are available within the community, and which ones require residents to go out in public. Find out if there are nearby shopping venues, parks or trails, local church services, and what transportation options are available if you want to get access to these.

Searching for the best senior living communities in Los Angeles? Get in touch with me today at 310.482.2035, or send me an email at toni(at)ToniPatillo(dotted)com.