Moving a loved one into an assisted living care facility is a big decision and a big transition for both of you. It’s imperative that you take the time to find the best facility possible. While it’s always possible to make mistakes, there are some tips to follow that can help minimize that risk, such as those below.

Start Early

Most people don’t start searching for assisted living care until they need it. This is understandable, as it’s not typically something that people plan to need from an early age.

Unfortunately, waiting until the last minute can mean not having time to find a facility that suits your loved one. How, then, can you find a good facility without being rushed?

The best thing to do is to start looking before they even need it. This doesn’t mean you’re wishing them into one and there is always a chance that they’ll never need it.

At this point, you’re not signing any paperwork – you’re just taking a look at what’s available. It gives you the time you need to mark any off of your list that are a definite no-go and have a smaller list of potentials that you can dive more deeply into when – and if – your loved one needs it.

Look For Affordability

Of course, you want to provide your loved one with the best, even if that means paying top dollar. Unfortunately, you might not have the money to keep them in the facility long-term, and their retirement funds might not be enough to cover it either.

If this happens, you risk having to pull them from a facility that they fell in love with. It’s better to find a facility that you can afford or talk to a financial planner about how to make your loved one’s money go the farthest.

Tour The Facility Yourself & Ask Questions

It’s important that you see the potential facility to get a true sense of what it will be like. If your loved one is able, take them with you. Check out what the rooms are like, how clean the place is, and how inviting the atmosphere seems.

If possible, dine with the residents. This will give you a chance to check out the food and speak to some people who know firsthand what the facility is like.

You’ll also want to ask the staff questions about anything that comes to mind. Be sure you get an understanding of the level of independence your loved one can maintain. Also, find out what types of belongings your loved one can bring to increase their sense of comfort. This might change between facilities, so it’s important to ask.

Pay Attention To Activities

While the activities provided should not be the only selling point, you want to know that your loved one will have plenty to do to remain active. Exercise programs are great to help them stay healthy and live longer. Recreational activities, such as movies, shopping, and concerts, also give them something enjoyable to look forward to.

Though nothing is foolproof, following the steps listed here can help ensure you choose the best facility for your loved one’s needs.