Transitions For Senior Living, Sharon Balleau : Published on October 20, 2021
A senior living advisor helps seniors find a place that suits their needs
When your older adult needs to move out of their home, finding available senior housing options can feel overwhelming. You might not know where to start to find the level of care that fits your older adult’s needs, location, budget, and lifestyle preferences. And finding a great place that will take excellent care of your older adult can be a time-consuming process.
Fortunately, there are specialists who can help – at no cost to you. These specialists are typically called a senior living advisor, senior housing expert, placement specialist, or referral agent. A senior living advisor can help narrow the list of potential senior living communities by identifying the ones that are the best fit and have a reputation for high quality care.
What senior living advisors do for seniors and families
Senior living advisors are similar to real estate agents, but they specialize in helping seniors find the right place to live. These specialists know the local area, the different types of senior housing options, and the inside scoop on what each place is really like.
Each advisor takes many factors into account for each individual situation:
- Payment options – private pay, long-term care insurance, VA Aid & Attendance, etc.
- Care needs — physical and cognitive
- Location – distance from family
- Personality/Lifestyle — Socially were will your loved one fit in best
The senior living advisor helps narrow the options to care communities that will be a good fit for your older adult. Then they’ll take you and/or your older adult to visit the top choices. These specialists also know how to find out if the senior living community has violations that were reported to the State Board and can share advice on quality, culture, turnover and safety.
How do senior living advisors get paid
Much like real estate agents, you don’t pay a senior housing expert out of your pocket. They get paid a commission by the senior living community that your older adult moves into.
Get fast help in crunch-time situations
You might especially appreciate a senior living advisor when you’re in a crunch and need to find housing for your older adult immediately. For example, your older adult could be getting discharged from a hospital or skilled nursing facility, but can’t safely return to their home. In this case, they may need to find a suitable care community on short notice.
Or they could start needing 24/7 care, but hiring around-the-clock in-home help would be financially impossible. The best solution would be to move to a quality senior living community with the appropriate level of care. In situations like these, it helps to work with a specialist who’s already familiar with all the local options, knows how to navigate the system, has connections in the senior care industry, and can help make things happen fast.
How to find a senior living advisor
To find a senior living advisor in your area, you may want to start by calling your county’s Area Agency on Aging to see if they have any recommendations. If you do search on-line, make sure you are using a local senior advisor service, there are some national agencies that don’t provide the comprehensive, hands-on services.
You could also ask another senior care services provider for a referral. For example, a social worker, elder law attorney, or home care agency manager may have worked with senior living advisors that they’d recommend.
Know your senior living advisor’s biases
Before committing to working with a specific senior living advisor, it’s important to ask if they only recommend certain care communities – for example, ones they work with regularly. Find out if they’re willing to search for and recommend any good care community that would meet your older adult’s needs – not just the ones that pay them a commission.
Transitions For Senior Living, is a family-owned services that has been helping families for 10 years and have a great understanding of all the communities in the St. Louis area. Let us meet with you and your loved ones to better understand your individual care needs and start making a plan and help avoid being in crisis-mode.
Sharon Balleau, Senior Care Advisor — 314-606-8531
Carmen Worley, Senior Care Advisor — 314-960-0548