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7 Tips for Choosing a Retirement Community
Date:5/18/2009

to increase and under what conditions. Find out the average fee increase percentage over the past five years.

4.   Meet with residents & tour the community: Ask to speak with several residents to see how they like living at the community. Stay for lunch or dinner so you can sample the food and the service. Notice if the community is clean, well maintained, and secure. Is there adequate parking?

5.   Use a services and amenities checklist: Get a complete information packet including application for admission, fee schedules, floor plans and resident contracts. Compare each community's pricing to amenities, programs and services offered. Consider closely the cost associated with staying in your current residence (maintenance, utilities, property taxes, insurance, etc.) versus moving.

6.   Ask about recreational and social activities: Find out what kind of social, cultural and educational activities are available. Is there an activities director on staff to plan entertainment, events, and trips? Is transportation available? Is there an on-site fitness center and programs for wellness?

7.   Consider location and find out if there is a waiting list: Is the community near family, friends, doctor's office, place of worship, and shopping? Is there a waiting list? If so, how does it work? Is a deposit required?

For more tips visit www.actsretirement.com/guide and download A Consumer's Guide to Retirement Living, a free 20-page booklet that explains the range of retirement living options that are available along with checklists and worksheets to help seniors gather information as they begin to explore retirement living options.

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