What Are Senior Apartments?

As older adults begin to think about how their retirement years will be best enjoyed while making the most of their time and resources, many seniors are now considering the option of senior apartments.

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Senior apartments are housing communities that can be in the form of apartments or even condominiums or townhouses for adults, usually 55 and older, though some can be 62 years and older, and often with age restrictions. 

An appealing living option and designed with the convenience and needs of seniors in mind, senior apartment living provides the option to live on your own, affordably and independently, while also being able to have reduced or no responsibility for home and yard maintenance and have a community atmosphere with peers of similar age. 

It is important to note that senior apartments are not necessarily the same as independent living communities.  They both have rentable space for seniors but independent living offers quite a few more amenities. Independent living communities will typically provide meals, housekeeping, and access to planned excursions and activities.  

With the accommodations of peaceful living space, senior apartments allow for the opportunity of downsizing a home and increasing freedom in one’s retiring years with fewer responsibilities and more vibrant social interaction.

senior living couple laughing and getting ready for a bike ride at their retirement community

What Amenities Do Apartments for Seniors Provide?

Senior apartments provide a wide range of amenities to enjoy.  Similar to any private home or apartment, yet uniquely designed to be more helpful with considerations such as lower cabinets in the kitchens, walk-in and well-lit closets, hand railing in the bathroom and shower areas, individual apartment climate control, elevators, and accessible ramps in and around the building premises to be accommodating to wheelchairs and enhance mobility with fewer stairs.  

Some apartments for older adults can be found near convenient shopping and within walking distance of local stores and restaurants or medical centers.  Other senior living apartments are nestled in quiet neighborhoods with peaceful outdoor areas. 

Some of the amenities offered can include daily, weekly, or monthly planned community activities for good social connection, such as board games, art activities, movie nights, or fitness classes.  These organized activities are an excellent way to get to know your neighbors and build friendships.  

Fitness facilities, game rooms, swimming pool, arts and crafts room, billiards, paths for walking, and computer rooms or libraries can be included.  Some senior apartments offer services like housekeeping and staff available to help with an array of needs.  Senior apartments may also provide gated communities, security cameras throughout the property,  and locked entryways for added security and protection.

Premium or luxury senior apartments may also provide larger onsite staff, transportation for local activities such as shopping, appointments or religious services, and housekeeping.  Some have pharmacy delivery and 24-hour emergency call systems. 

Friends and family are welcome and encouraged to visit senior apartments, though most apartments for seniors will have restrictions about who can live there.  Some senior apartments may allow for a loved one or family member who is younger and a non-senior to live with them, however, to accommodate a quieter living space without loud noises and the responsibilities of children, most senior apartments are specifically for those 55 and older. 

Pets are generally always welcome in senior apartments as our favorite furry friends bring much-enjoyed comfort and love.  There may be a size limit for dogs and breed restrictions may apply.  Some senior apartments will offer a dog park or grass area while others may not provide a pet relief area.  

The size and design of senior apartments can vary depending on preferences and specific needs.  There are usually a variety of designs available that include studio apartments, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom options, with the number of bathrooms, storage closets, and square footage ranging in availability and depending on how much a resident would like to pay.

Parking in senior apartment communities may be covered or uncovered and sometimes assigned. 

As you choose a destination in your senior apartment search, there are some valuable things to consider.  Like finding staff and neighbors that are helpful and friendly.  You are going to be spending a lot of time here and it will be most beneficial to have pleasant experiences and interactions with those you connect with frequently.  

The location of the senior apartments is also important and you will want to talk with residents to see what they enjoy and hear how safe they feel.  How close are the community to your loved ones, children, and grandchildren?  How far are you willing to move from the location you currently live in? Being able to walk to a local park or outdoor area as well as any conveniences such as shops or restaurants can be important when choosing a location as well.  

It might be worth asking how personal the apartment can be made, like with painting rooms and hanging things on the walls.  Some senior apartments may have restrictions for decorating and it will be helpful to know this in advance.  

Independent living suite at the park living room and kitchen

How Much Do Senior Apartments Cost?

The cost for senior apartments, or the average apartment rent, can vary depending on the size and style of preference and the number of amenities offered for the senior apartment community.  Most senior apartments will fall into the categories of affordable, market rate, and luxury.  

While there are alternative housing options such as senior mobile home parks, senior living townhouses, and condominiums that are available for purchase, senior living apartments are generally rented and paid for monthly and require a lease signing.  

Often, a vibrant 55 plus retirement community purchase will include access to community amenities such as a clubhouse, pool, and outdoor park area.  For senior housing apartments for rent, some will be based on income guidelines and others are privately owned apartments that do not require income guidelines.  Most senior apartments will give you the ability to lower monthly payments, depending on your current home or rental payment situation.  

Selling a home and moving into a senior apartment is also a great way to free up your finances so you can choose to do the things you’ve always wanted to and spend your time with those you love, like children, grandchildren, family, and friends.  

Based on the cost of living in a local area, some affordable senior apartment pricing is determined by local, state, and federal laws for low-income housing.  Affordable will most likely mean that someone renting a senior apartment will pay 30 percent of their income or less on rent and utilities.  

At a market rate pricing, senior apartments can reflect the local costs found in other all-age apartments within a town or city.  Luxury, or premium, senior apartments will often cost more than the average local apartment rentals and may provide more housing and property amenities.

When you are ready to apply, check to see if the rental is accepting applications. To qualify for senior apartments, you will typically need to meet the criteria of the community you would like to live in, such as, age requirements, income requirements, credit check, and filling out an application.  Senior apartments can be an excellent way for older adults to enjoy an active life in their retirement years with a lot less maintenance and a whole lot more time to spend on the things they truly cherish.

Koelsch Senior Living Apartments and Retirement Communities Near You


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