Sunday, April 30, 2017

One Family's Story: Heading West With Mom

I love telling stories.  True stories of families finding wonderful new homes for their loved ones.

Our company, Silver Age Housing & Care Referrals, matches seniors and their families with the best of retirement communities, assisted living communities or adult family homes.  Our service is free to families; we're paid by the communities on move-in.

For me, the best part of my job is the stories of heroic families wanting the very best for their loved ones, even if it means traveling across the country. 

Take Jane, 85.  Until a few months ago she lived in rural New York with little support except her younger brother.  One day, "Bam," he fell out of an apple tree, breaking his hip and ending his caregiver days. Jane's children were soon called into service.  They discovered her home was unsanitary and no longer safe.  They took her to their home in Washington State.  But this wasn't a long-term solution.

That's where Silver Age (and I) came in.  Jane didn't want to live in assisted living,  So we talked about what she did enjoy.  She loved baking wedding cakes and sewing wedding dresses.  She enjoyed playing the piano and listening to music.  And of course, there were the grandchildren, all here in Washington.

I also talked with her children separately about the Veterans Aid and Attendance which she likely would qualify for later as the widow of a veteran of World War II.

Jane's son and daughter-in-law visited a couple of assisted living communities and decided on one of them.  After several days of discussion and visits, Jane decided to move.

Several weeks later, Jane is doing well in her new home, minutes away from her family.  She is starting to make friends.  It's a great story; and I got to be a part of it!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Touring Assisted Living? A set of questions can make it easier.

Are you global? Do you look at the overall picture, and rely on intuition and your senses to know what's right?  Or are you analytical, wanting to check every box, so you ask question after question until you're finally satisfied?

Many of us are some of both.  Whatever your decision making style, the search for housing and/or care for a loved one or for yourself can be daunting. 

Before you tour assisted living communities and/or adult family homes, consider formulating a list of questions that will keep you on track.  Silver Age Housing & Care Referrals, where I work, has created a list for clients that zeros in on key categories such as results of annual state surveys, staffing levels,  levels of care, cost and price increases, plus the more intangibles like average tenure of staff and management and resident satisfaction.

Many of my clients really get into the interview process.  They ask the same questions to each provider and stay focused on the search, rather than looking around and hunting for something to say.  When they choose "the winner," they feel good about the process and their final selection.

There are others, however, who may look at the questions ahead of time, but on touring day, they go with their gut, in a global sort of way. 

I happen to be one of those globals, but even so, preformulated questions help me tremendously. Our website's resource page contains a list of questions for touring which our clients have found helpful.  Look for the questions near the bottom of the Resource Page. Happy touring1

Silver Age Resource Page
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