Retirement Communities: Rent vs. Buy

older couple with paperwork
Can I Afford a Continuing Care Retirement Community?
July 10, 2017
older couple reviewing paperwork
Success and Your Senior Parent’s Retirement
July 13, 2017
Show all

Retirement Communities: Rent vs. Buy

If your parents are considering moving, as two-thirds of retirement-age adults do, which is better? Renting or buying?

Well, it depends.

Renting vs. Buying for Retirees

Trulia’s Rent vs. Buy Report comes down squarely on the side of rent for people of retirement age.

Unless your parents want to leave their home as an inheritance, they’re better off renting, because it’s a better deal. The reason is that retirees stay in a house (almost double the amount of time), put down a 20% down payment and fall into a lower tax bracket than other ages.

Senior Living Community Options

When it comes to senior living communities, the decision is not so clear-cut.

  • Independent living communities, in general, have homes that include maintenance cost and other amenities in the sale price.
  • Continuing care retirement communities have the major selling point of a continuum of care from independent living through skilled nursing. However, in general, you don’t buy a home; you pay an upfront entry fee that offers you care for the rest of your life, even if you become incapacitated, plus a monthly fee.
  • Assisted living and skilled nursing facilities rent you a room and services, in many cases on a fee-for-services basis.

In these situations, need determines whether renting or buying is a better option. If your parents plan to move again or don’t foresee a need for additional help, an independent living community may well be their best choice.

If you want to ensure they’ve planned for every eventuality, they may want to invest in a continuing care retirement community so they pay more now in order for their future healthcare needs to be met.

Assisted living and skilled nursing facilities are designed for those who need additional care immediately. Your parents would have to meet qualifying criteria for residence.

Continuing Care with a Difference

Most continuing care retirement communities require an entrance fee to prepay for future care. The National Investment Center for Seniors Housing and Care survey indicates average entry fees range from $107,000 to $427,000, and average monthly service fees range from $2,089 to $4,154 in the United States.  Many also require application fees, which can run $1,000 or more.

At The Apartment Community, though, there is no application fee. Our contracts are month-to-month. A 60-day notice is all that is required to end your parents’ contract in the independent living apartments.

Because The Apartment Community is a nonprofit under the auspices of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, we operate differently. Our goals are centered around service. We are the only retirement living community located on the grounds of a national Catholic shrine, and we accept people of all faiths.

Added Value

Like most continuing care retirement communities, though, The Apartment Community offers numerous amenities. Ours are more extensive than many and include:

  • Meal plans
  • Barber shops/beauty salons
  • Fitness center
  • Transportation for shopping and to local attractions
  • Public areas
  • Library
  • Home and property maintenance
  • Snow removal
  • Housekeeping
  • Linen service
  • 24-hour security
  • Emergency response systems
  • Parking
  • Free entertainment
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Dentist consultant on-site
  • Monthly massage therapist on-site
  • Monthly Podiatrist on-site
  • Auditorium for dances, concerts, movies and lectures
  • Lounge with big screen TV/VCR/DVD
  • Computer Cafe with Internet access
  • Arts & Crafts room
  • Billiards room
  • Puzzle room
  • Woodworking area
  • Aviary
  • Bank representatives on-site weekly
  • Community garden
  • Beautiful chapel available 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • Pastoral staff, including Catholic priests and a Protestant minister
  • 200 beautifully landscaped wooded areas, including a rose garden, a waterfall, fountains and courtyards for leisurely outdoor strolls
  • Wide halls with handrails and floor-to-ceiling glass for scenic views
  • Storage facility

Value of a Continuing Care Retirement Community

Amenities and the guarantee of future care are the primary reasons continuing care communities are so popular among retirees of all ages. The initial payments average out so, as residents need more care, they receive greater value for their payment.

As explained on our website: “Once you have chosen to reside here, you need never worry about moving again. The campus offers independent living, assisted living and skilled nursing care all under one roof. We offer a variety of truly affordable retirement plans, all without entry fees.”

It’s Your Choice

In the end, it’s not just a matter of which option is cheaper; what’s important is which option provides the care your parents need at a price they can afford in an environment that promotes their happiness, independence, and quality of life.

The Apartment Community of Our Lady of the Snows is designed to support the intellectual, social, physical, and spiritual wellness of residents. Find out more about what we offer by calling 618-394-6400 or 800-533-6279 or contacting us online.

Cost of Living Comparison Guide