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Choosing the Right Community

When browsing through the available retirement communities in British Columbia, keeping track of which communities have certain amenities or services that you find appealing can be challenging.

Senior living communities vary in size, location, amenities, pricing, programs, and services. The blend of professional staff and management in each community can work to shape the personality of the atmosphere and the lifestyle options that residents can participate in.

Tips for Making the Right Choice

  • While touring a retirement residence, speak to the residents and ask about their perceptions of the community.
  • Plan to stay or return another day for a complimentary lunch or dinner.
  • Don’t limit your tour to suite and common areas. Ask to see the kitchen and other locations around the community.
  • Enquire about a trial visit or an overnight stay to get a feel for the rooms.
  • Ask for resident family references you can contact for their opinions.
  • Beyond the standard tour, check stairwells and other less traveled areas to see how well they’re cleaned and maintained.
  • Ask for copies of any paperwork required for admission along with samples of menus, activity calendars, and newsletters.
  • You may also consider hiring a consultant to help you find a suitable retirement residence and provide assistance with reservations.
Does Your Retirement Community Have These Services and Amenities Available?

  • General Services:
    • Dining/Meals
    • Tray Service to Suites
    • Daily Housekeeping
    • Weekly Housekeeping
    • Personal Laundry
    • Recreation Program
    • Medication Supervision
    • Vitals Monitoring
    • Visiting Physician
    • Physician on Call
    • Dementia Unit
    • Visiting Dental Service
    • Visiting Lab Service
    • Visiting Podiatrist
    • Visiting Physiotherapist
    • Pharmacy Services
    • Assisted Living Services
    • Respite/Convalescent Care
    • RN/RPN on staff
    • Private Duty Nursing
    • Transportation
  • Building Amenities:
    • Central Dining Room
    • Library
    • Resident Storage
    • Air Conditioned Common Areas
    • Private Dining Room/Area
    • Chapel
    • Tuck Shop
    • Fire and/or Smoke Alarms
    • Lounges
    • Horticulture Area
    • Beauty Salon
    • Parking
    • Wheelchair Accessible
    • Sprinkler System
    • Swimming Pool
  • Suite Amenities:
    • Private Bath
    • Heating – Individually Controlled
    • Air Conditioning – Individually Controlled
    • Emergency Call System
Questions to Ask Regarding…
Community Services

  • How close is the nearest hospital, medical clinic, dentist office, etc.?
  • Are there churches, parks, shops, and/or a senior center nearby?
  • How accessible is public transportation?
  • Is there an accessible transit service?

Financial Matters

  • What is the daily/monthly rate?
  • Are there charges for additional services a resident may want or need?
  • Is phone or cable service part of your package?
  • Is there a resident petty cash account with separate accounting?
  • What type of notice period is required should a resident need or decide to move?
  • How often are rates for accommodation and/or services increased?
  • What is the average annual rate of increase over the last few years?

Admission Policies

  • Are wheelchairs and walkers accepted?
  • What about scooters?
  • Are any forms of oxygen therapy allowed?
  • Is a health assessment required?
  • What happens if your health deteriorates?

Explore Our

Member Communities

With over 175 BCSLA members, there are numerous communities in the association that provide accommodation, hospitality services, recreation activities and outings, social interaction, and assistance with daily living (if applicable). You can locate a community near you here!

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