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Choosing the Right Retirement Community in Virginia Beach

senior couple on the beach

Choosing a Senior Living Community.

Choosing Virginia Beach.

When you hear the term senior living community, what comes to mind? There are actually many different types of senior housing and residential care options that might come under the term senior living community. But they can be very different from one another and choosing the right senior living community requires a more nuanced understanding of these differences. Here’s a quick survey of the types of retirement communities that promote healthy aging for seniors, and what to look for as you attempt to choose the right retirement community for you.

Stepping through the levels of care

In the most general sense, the term senior living community can refer to housing designed to suit an independent lifestyle, and potentially offer varying degrees of amenities and services, as well as access to levels of care that include assisted living, memory care, rehabilitation therapies and long-term nursing care. Here’s a summary of what these levels mean.

Independent living. This is a term that describes a senior living lifestyle for retired adults who want the conveniences of community life without the burdens of home ownership.  Many offer meals, housekeeping, maintenance, social activities and transportation assistance.

Assisted living. When help with daily tasks is needed — taking medicines, bathing, dressing, meals, transportation and housekeeping — an assisted living residence can be the answer. Trained professionals provide this assistance while helping preserve an individual’s independence. You can find stand-alone communities that offer residential assisted living, as well as communities where assisted living is but one level on a continuum of care offered at the same location.

Skilled nursing. For those recovering from illness or injury, short-term skilled nursing care is available either at a facility dedicated to providing those therapies, or at a larger community offering multiple levels of care. Services may include bathing, dressing, toileting, wound care, rehabilitative therapy, help with respirators or ventilators, and even end-of-life care.

Memory care and long-term nursing care. Some communities include memory support for people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia, as well as long-term custodial nursing care for older seniors who require it.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities or Life Plan Communities. Here’s where you’ll typically find several levels of care in one setting — independent living residences for those in good health, assisted living for those who need help with daily activities, memory care and long-term nursing care. Residents of a CCRC can move from one level of care to another as needed.

Another important factor is LOCATION!

Whether you’re looking for a residence in a peaceful rural setting or one with a more urban vibe, location is a major factor in finding the right place to spend your retirement years. Give careful thought to each of these 7 areas:

  • Cost of living
  • Activities available
  • Local crime
  • Weather
  • Proximity to family
  • Presence of other retired people
  • Access to care services

In an article for WalletHub entitled 2021’s Best States to Retire, financial writer Adam McCann ranks Virginia as #4 overall, based on affordability, quality of life and health care. Within the state of Virginia, Virginia Beach is considered among the 50 best, most livable cities in the country. You can gain an appreciation of the area’s diverse ecosystem by visiting the Brock Environmental Center, the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, First Landing State Park and Norfolk Botanical Garden.

Atlantic Shores Community in Virginia Beach

Located on 100 wooded acres along the shores of Lake Redwing in Virginia Beach, Atlantic Shores puts you in a beautiful, natural setting that includes more than 300 species of plants and flowers amid our lush grounds and green space. Residents stroll, bike, or ride a golf cart through our tree-lined streets and sidewalks. Living here gives you easy access to Virginia Beach’s finest beaches, cultural attractions, fine and casual dining, golf and tennis, professional services, and world-class shopping. Inside the community, the amenities are simply incomparable. 

Atlantic Shores is the only senior living community in Virginia Beach where you can choose either equity ownership or rental, offering three senior housing options — Resident Memberships — that allow you to customize how you want to live. You’re free to “buy-in” and own your own home, or sign a lease agreement. It’s how we enable smart senior financial planning, where you can choose the size home that fits your lifestyle, the financial arrangement that benefits you most, and the senior care options you prefer to pay for.

Choosing a place that’s right for you

Aside from determining the levels of care you might need, now or in the future, there are a number of other basic factors to consider.

WHAT SIZE COMMUNITY FEELS RIGHT?

Resident populations may vary from just a few hundred to more than a thousand. Some are high-rise buildings with no real campus; others are spread across acreage.

WHAT TYPES OF RESIDENCES ARE OFFERED?

Apartments? Villas? Can you find the space and floor plan you need?

DOES THE COMMUNITY HAVE THE AMENITIES YOU DESIRE?

Dining venues, fitness centers, on-site wellness clinics, a pool, and movie theaters are just some of the amenities offered today.

WHAT ABOUT COST?

Rentals often provide residency with no large, upfront fee, but may offer few services and amenities, and possibly no care at all. Continuing Care Retirement Communities include a richer array of extras, but typically charge higher fees. There is also a variety of contracts from which to choose. It’s important to determine what is and isn’t included.

WHAT ARE THE COMMUNITY’S CREDENTIALS?

Is it a resident-governed cooperative community? Is it backed by a management partner with a long track record of excellence and pioneer in managing full-service senior living communities?

For more details, we’re here for you. We’re glad to answer any questions, and we promise we’ll never, ever pressure you to make a decision. We’re proud of our community, and we’d love to tell you more about our exceptional retirement living. Contact us today.