So I began the search yesterday (on line) for options for Mom in our area. Just a preliminary glance at what getting her to Mount Juliet near us might look like. I looked at our options, the cost of real estate, and the various forms of real estate. I checked out the senior living communities, the levels of care, and glanced at the wide range of costs accordingly. I also talked with George and considered options if Mom were to stay with us.
So it’s just the beginning. We’ve much to discuss and to discover. But it is time to decide upon our approach. I think that is probably the biggest decision yet. How will we approach this. Having everyone on the same page, looking in the same direction, and having open minds at what possibilities lay ahead. If we don’t decide our approach and plans on “how to approach this”, nothing will happen until it’s too late and decisions will be made on a whim and will be narrowed at that point.
Deciding the Approach of Senior Living
When I say “How will we approach this?” I mean how will we in the family (Mom, me, and George) tackle the 1) Looking 2) Decisions 3) Timing 4) Moving —-and so forth. I mean things like – getting Mom here to look at property or communities, will we drive around and look at communities and get a feel for neighborhoods first, or do we just get a realtor. And narrowing our focus on what we are focusing on. We need to funnel down and figure out what we are doing and know what we need to do and go from there. Otherwise we will stay in the speculating mode until it’s too late.
Options for Senior Living
In my quick glances and it was very quick I might add, I’ve seen the following:
- Senior Living Communities – With varying levels of care. Some have their own properties and some do not. Some have Independent living but include *some* level of care and then it goes to assisted living and more nursing home type care from there. I checked out several of these places. With some care $12,000 annually – on up according to level of care. These included housework, some meals, having staff on hand, use of facilities to gather, social aspects for the minimum of care and as the level of care increased so does the cost.
- Condos. Preferably condos with one floor. Well that is hard to find. Most are townhomes. Some are affordable, most are not and are as pricy as most homes. However, I have made a mental note that as long as a bedroom is on the main floor it might be doable. One has to keep an open mind. Family could visit and use the upstairs – family would have to keep up the upstairs as well. Not a bad option. Also one room could be a storage area for the family to access I guess as the senior does not need to be going up and down the stairs. If one had an open mind – there are beautiful condo units that would provide a first floor haven – IF.ONE.HAD.AN.OPEN.MIND!
- Smaller Home communities. This is a good option. But wow, hardly any of them for sale. Matter of fact much of what was for sale in any range was already pending. This will be a hard find but doable if we snag it at the right time. We have to be “Johnny on the Spot” when these go on the market. This is what I mean about knowing our approach. We have to be like birds on prey for the swooping!
- There are NEW homes being built at lower pricing but most are just outside our reach on what we think Mom can afford when selling her house. Yes, we’ll have to help her sell her house. Again, what is our approach? What is our plan? Buy pending the sale? Go ahead and sell? What? We need a game plan.
- Looking Further Out. We have to decide the radius from us. My view is that we can do Mount Juliet, Hermitage, and Lebanon. All 20 -30 minutes – like a drive across town. Anywhere where it’s feasible we can “come right over” after work and on weekends, and such. Lebanon had better pricing as it’s further out from Nashville, but NOT BY MUCH, much to my dismay!
- Living with us. I talked to George as to how we might handle this. He is on board with it if we decide to go this route until Mom is ready for Assisted Living care. We would likely turn my office into her bedroom or something to that effect. I’d move a china hutch downstairs and move my office desk into the living area – something like that. We’d figure it out. We have enough space.
- Apartment living. I think this has been ruled out, but it is certainly an option.
- In Home Care. Another option is someone to help Mom with In Home Care at her own home now. That gets a little riskier but you can’t rule it out if you have an open mind and an honest person giving care at whatever level is needed. So again – we need to decide or approach, or not. And then something happens and the options narrow.
- Some other option not considered yet.
Anyway, it’s not feasible for us to get down to Columbia every weekend or on a whim, we can increase our time going down there but it.is.not.feasible for a long term care solution for her. We can’t manage household emergencies, medical appointments, and such from up here. Sometimes care can’t be done just on the weekends. Mom needs help but we need to be near her. If she is here we can spend time together, help with emergencies, help with the dog, pick up meds, feed her good meals, and give her some rest and relief and some happiness. We are all game! I’d be so excited to have her near or even here. We will figure it out together! Stay tuned.