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April 1, 2023

3 Things to Consider When Exploring Senior Living Communities in BC

When you begin your search for senior living, you’re taking the first step toward a new chapter of life. Not only are you looking for a new home, but you’re searching for a place that offers enriching community, fulfillment, and an environment where you can enhance your lifestyle. 

But, as you start exploring, you’ll face a long list of options, and narrowing down your top choices can be overwhelming. 

As an organization dedicated to the promotion and protection of the best interests of its members, which include the owners and operators of senior living communities in BC, the BC Seniors Living Association (BCSLA) is proud to work with exceptional communities across British Columbia. We’re sharing things to consider when exploring senior living options to help you find the best fit for your interests and lifestyle. 

Services and Amenities

The services and amenities offered in any senior living community serve as the “wow factor” that grabs your attention. However, amenities and services are more than just added bonuses. While touring a community, it’s crucial to think of the services and amenities as tools for enhancing your wellness, purpose, and quality of life. 

Senior living communities in BC offer a maintenance-free lifestyle and can include routine maintenance, housekeeping and/or laundry, transportation, and dining options. Be sure to ask each community the following questions regarding services:

  • What types of services does the community provide for residents?
  • Are services like housekeeping and/or laundry included or an additional fee?
  • What is the dining experience like at the community?

While services provide convenience, amenities provide enrichment, activity, and purpose. Think about the last time you stayed at a resort or hotel; you probably had access to a fitness centre, pool, and/or other on-site features. Senior living community amenities offer the same opportunities for residents. Depending on your interests and lifestyle goals, here are a few amenities to consider:

  • On-site wellness centres and/or classes
  • Activity groups or clubs
  • On-site pool
  • Garden/outdoor areas
  • Education opportunities
  • Recreation rooms, i.e., theatres, billiards, etc. 

Make the Most out of Community Tours

A tour is the best time to ask questions and get answers. Use this time to ask staff members questions regarding services and amenities, as well as the social aspect of the community. Inquire about dining services (some communities allow you to enjoy a meal to experience the dining first-hand), enrichment programs and opportunities, and anything other questions you may have.

During your tour, go beyond the common spaces. For example, ask to view an available suite or apartment to see the aesthetics and sizes of personal rooms. Explore outdoor and dining areas, being mindful of upkeep and presentation. For instance, is the landscaping overgrown because it’s been raining or because they don’t currently have a maintenance person on staff?

In addition, speak to residents about their opinions and experiences within the community. This is an excellent way to get a first-hand perspective, and – should you choose that community – is a great path towards making new friends. 

Before you leave, consider asking a staff member for copies of paperwork required for admission, along with sample menus, event calendars, or newsletters. 

Location and Convenience

Wherever you move, determining the location of your new home can make a big difference in many aspects of your lifestyle. Senior living communities in BC can offer scenic views, opportunities to get outdoors, art and culture, metropolitan experiences, and more. 

When it comes to convenience, research the community’s proximity to hospitals, medical clinics, dentist offices, and any other healthcare provider you might require. Also, look up the distance between your community and the nearest city so that you can enjoy immersing yourself in the surrounding town to take advantage of shopping, dining, and other attractions! 

Starting your search for the perfect senior living community shouldn’t be overwhelming or stressful – it should be exciting! Touring senior living communities in BC is the first step on a new adventure, during which you’ll be able to enhance your wellness and embrace a purposeful and active lifestyle. 

We invite you to browse our Member Directory to explore exceptional senior living communities throughout BC!

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