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Independent Living

What Questions to Ask When Touring a Retirement Community

If you’ve ever explored retirement community options for yourself or a loved one, you know there are a wealth of choices. The ideal way to start your search is with a structured plan that gives you a better understanding of available choices so you can easily evaluate and narrow them down. Is now the time to move to an independent community? What questions should you be asking once you determine the two or three communities you want to explore more in-depth?

Here, we provide guidance on understanding your options and how to prepare for a productive and informative tour of your prospective new residence. 

Exploring Your Retirement Living Options

The first step in your retirement living research is to choose which type of retirement living option you need. If you are healthy and independent you can opt for independent living. Independent living is for those who do not require assistance with the activities of day-to-day living beyond housekeeping and maintenance. These communities are for active older adults looking to enrich their social lives. 

Some communities, like Claridge Court, offer independent living and supportive services on-site, such as  skilled nursing and rehabilitation. Many also offer access to private apartments or cottages with shared amenities. These styles of living offer residents the opportunity to make new connections based on shared passions and lifestyle preferences.   

Touring a Retirement Community 

Despite the wealth of information online, the best way to get to know a retirement community is to see it for yourself. This can give you a greater sense of the community’s energy, lifestyle offerings and overall suitability to your needs.  It’s also the perfect opportunity to ask any questions you may have thought about during your research. 

If you’re unsure which questions to ask during your tour, use the questions below as a starting point.  

What to Ask When Touring a Retirement Community

Consider adding your own questions to the following list. Be sure to bring it with you when exploring any communities. 

Appearance & Maintenance 

During the tour, make a note of what you see, hear and smell. Ask yourself (or your tour guide) these questions. 

  1. Are the community grounds, buildings and landscape well-maintained?
  2. Is there a landscaping and building maintenance schedule?
  3. Are there different room types and floor plans to choose from? Which one would be a good fit for me?
  4. How is the lighting in the community? Does it feel cramped and dark or open and airy?
  5. How is the security in the community? Do I feel safe? Who do I contact if any emergency situations arise?

Amenities & Services  

You might have already researched amenities, but ask your tour guide too. They’ll have updated information and can provide more details. 

  1. What health services are available on-site or nearby if I need assistance?
  2. What’s the difference between the amenities this community offers versus another community I’ve researched? Are the differences significant? Do they matter to me? 
  3. Can I visit the fitness center, salon or spa?
  4. What is the dining experience like? Do you employ a chef? If yes, what are their qualifications? May I see a sample menu?
  5. Can I enjoy a meal in one of the dining venues on my tour? 

Financial & Miscellaneous  

There are many different types of contracts and inclusive amenities as part of the fee structure. So it’s critical to understand all of the financial aspects of joining a community. Ensure that you ask appropriate questions related to the type of contract you are offered. 

  1. What type of contract is offered?
  2. What’s included as part of the fee structure?
  3. Is there a benevolence policy in place?

The most important question you can ask yourself at the end of the tour: is how do I feel about this community? Trust your initial impressions. You are your own best guide. 

Schedule a Tour at Claridge Court

Is sophistication and elegance on your “must-have” list? Then Claridge Court could be the community for you. Enjoy a refined lifestyle that embraces the unique culture of the Kansas City area you know and love. From our neighborhood’s quiet-yet-connected Johnson County location to our sterling services and amenities, senior living in Prairie Village, KS, simply doesn’t get any better. 

To discover more about what living at Claridge Court is like, or to schedule a tour, contact us


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