9 Things to Ask When Touring a Senior Living Community


4 min read

9 Things to Ask When Touring a Senior Living Community


Senior Health and Wellbeing

Choosing the best next step for a senior can be an intimidating decision. To help make a more informed choice, bring these questions for staff—and yourself—to your next community tour.


What levels of care are offered here?

 Senior living communities provide varying degrees of care, including independent living for folks who want a community setting with little day-to-day help, assisted living for those who need a hand with activities of daily living such as bathing and dressing, and memory care for people with dementia. Find out if the community matches your loved one’s current needs, and if it’s possible to progress from one level to the next if necessary in the future.


Who will be caring for my loved one?

 Ask to meet the supervisors who will oversee your loved one’s care. Do they know the other residents by name? What are the resident-to-staff ratios during the day and at night?


How will you keep my loved one safe?

 Communities should have a multifaceted approach to security, including established visitor screening procedures, a clear fire safety plan and exit door locks and alarms.


What measures do you take to prevent falls?

 Too often, a reactive approach to senior healthcare results in a downward spiral of falls and poor outcomes. Look for proactive fall-prevention technology such as in-room cameras and wearable health monitoring devices that can aid in avoiding falls before they occur and alert staff automatically if a fall does take place.


Are healthcare providers available onsite?

 A multidisciplinary healthcare team helps ensure that no aspects of your loved one’s care falls through the cracks. Does the community offer primary care, physical therapy, nutrition services and other healthcare in-house? If so, how do these providers communicate with one another to optimize health?


What social outlets are offered to residents?

 Ask to see the community’s event calendar. Do the activities appeal to a wide variety of interests? How does the staff encourage residents to participate and engage socially?


Can I talk to another resident or family?

 This can be the best way to understand the pros and cons of a community and to learn what it’s really like to live there.


Does it feel like home?

 A family’s satisfaction with a senior living community often begins with a sense of homecoming the moment they walk in. Do the staff and decor feel warm and welcoming? Is the atmosphere cozy, or institutional?


How can you help my loved one live their best life?

 Every life story deserves a comfortable, peaceful and respectful final chapter. Staff should be able to articulate how the community and its caregivers will be able to provide the best possible narrative for your loved one.

Contemplating the next chapter in your loved one’s story? Click here to learn more about Bickford Senior Living and to find a branch near you.