Long-Term Care: talking, deciding, taking action Home


Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) are also known as Life Care Communities. In a Continuing Care Retirement Community, you live independently in the residential community’s villas, condominiums, or apartments, knowing you have the choice to use the services and living situations of assisted living and skilled nursing home care also on the grounds of the CCRC, if needed.

You can move to and from these facilities based on your changing needs at each point or time. If you need rehabilitation from surgery or a hospital stay, you can choose to stay temporarily in the CCRC’s assisted living or nursing home care facility based on your medical needs. Once you are recovered and evaluated to be able to live independently, you can move back into your villa, condominium, or apartment.

In some cases, a change to the assisted living or nursing home may be for a longer length of time based on a person’s physical and medical needs. If residency in the assisted living or nursing home looks permanent, you and your family must understand the CCRC contract and rules. Understand how long you can maintain your villa, condominium, or apartment and when it needs to be sold or leased to someone else.

The CCRCs provide a lot of amenities, physical activities, and educational and cultural programs for seniors to participate in. However, a CCRC is one of the most expensive long-term care housing options for later life. Most CCRC’s require an entry fee or endowment fee paid in advance. As a retiree, you need to understand when an entrance fee is refundable and when it is not. Some require proof you have monthly income that is two to three times the monthly facility fee. In addition, others require home ownership but don’t have an entrance fee.

According to Helpguide.org, the entrance fee for a CCRC can vary from $20,000 to over $400,000. These fees vary depending on:

In addition to the entrance fees, there is typically a monthly maintenance fee. The monthly maintenance fee can range from $400 to $2500, or even more. Because there is a binding long-term legal contract to sign, it is highly recommended that people seek legal counsel before making this important decision.

The prices for CCRCs vary from state to state, from region to region, and type of residence layout and amenities. If you are interested in living in a CCRC, investigate costs using the Internet, library, e-mail inquiries, and actual in-person visits.

These websites may be helpful in comparing costs of CCRCs.