Have you considered all of your senior retirement housing options in Oakville and Burlington? From seniors apartments to retirement homes, life lease housing, co-op housing and homesharing, Welcome Home Transitions has got the information you need to make an informed decision.
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It isn’t always easy to find a home. A change is often top of mind when your current home is too much to maintain, or when it no longer meets your evolving care needs. Perhaps you’ve already invested time researching options and calculating costs, maybe going so far as to drive by buildings or touring over-55 retirement communities.
Some of you may be unsure about where to turn next. Trying to find a senior retirement housing solution that satisfies your care needs, timeline, and budget, can be a monumental challenge for anyone to overcome. Welcome Home Transitions specializes in guiding families and seniors to better retirement living decisions. Check out the Senior Apartments to learn more about naturally occurring retirement communities, Rent-Geared-to-Income housing, luxury apartments, over-55, and adult lifestyle properties in Oakville and Burlington.
Independent living means different things to different people. For many, independent living may mean aging-in-place (link) in their existing home. For others, it means downsizing to an adult lifestyle community, seniors apartment or a congregate living property designed with older adults in mind, like a Retirement Home or Long-Term Care home.
Often, congregate living properties are a combination of independent living facilities, co-located with assisted living and memory care facilities. The benefit of this arrangement is that should the older person require additional care to complete their activities of daily living (ADL), they can access the necessary care services without having to transition to a new facility.
Typically, independent living in a congregate living property is associated with the provision of minimal services. For example, housekeeping, laundry services and meal preparation may be delivered as part of the cost of independent living. Many of these independent living properties also offer residents access to common spaces, scheduled social and exercise activities, on-site medical support, shuttle bus for shopping excursions, parking, and in-room kitchenettes.
In Oakville and Burlington, there are at least 10 Retirement Homes offering independent living units, many in combination of assisted living units. Several of these properties also offer memory care programs within the facilities. These properties tend to be owned privately (not by the government) and operate as for-profit businesses. Learn more about Retirement Home access and costs.
Some older adults are able to age-in-place with care services to complete their ADL. Others move into congregate living property like Long-Term Care homes, Retirement Homes or other types of facilities that deliver the care services to assist the older person with their ADL.
Congregate living properties may be government-owned while others are owned privately and are operated as for-profit businesses. Learn about the differences between Retirement Homes and Long-Term Care Homes. The ownership and management structure, as well as, the nature of care services and the delivery of those services to residents are regulated by the Province of Ontario. Learn about Long-Term Care Home access and cost.
When people require 24-hour nursing care, they often consider Long-Term Care (LTC) homes as a senior living option. The cost of LTC homes is regulated and funded in part by the Government of Ontario. Residents contribute the cost of room and board. These costs are established by the Government and depending on the type of accommodation, costs range from $1,900 to $2,700 per month for basic and private accommodation respectively.
In Oakville and Burlington, there are 15 LTC Homes (as of January 2021). It’s important to know many of these properties have waitlists. For example, the waitlists for some properties exceeds ten years. To access these properties, contact your Local Health Integration Network to commence the application process.
Housing co-operatives (co-ops) are another popular senior retirement housing option, but these properties are currently difficult to access due to their high demand. What is interesting about co-ops is that they are member-owned and controlled. If you want to live in a co-op, you need to apply to become a member, which in turn is subject to the approval of the board members. These facilities are regulated under the Ontario Co‑operative Corporations Act.
In Oakville and Burlington, there are 15 housing co-ops (as of January 2021). Many are a combination of market-rent, barrier-free and Rent-Geared-to-Income (link) units. Due to their popularity, some co-ops were not accepting member applications for the foreseeable future while others have a five-year waitlist.
Life lease housing is often marketed as adult lifestyle communities. These types of properties involve the purchaser acquiring the right to occupy the property for an unlimited amount of time. This means the purchaser may live in the unit for life, or such time when they can no longer reside in the unit. Typically, these communities provide residents with access to common areas and shared facilities. Purchasers remit an initial deposit and then monthly condo-like fees thereafter to cover costs like building maintenance, common utilities and other fees.
It’s important to understand if there are any restrictions on the property’s use and /or sale. For example, some properties can only be sold to people on an existing waitlist. While others retain a fixed percentage of the unit’s selling price. I advise people interested in life lease housing to engage a qualified legal representative to review agreement terms.
In Oakville and Burlington, there are two life lease type properties (as of January 2021), designated for residents over-65.
Co-housing typically involves unrelated people buying a home with the intention of living together. Some of you may be familiar with ‘Golden Girls’, a 1980’s American television sitcom. The storyline revolved around the lives of a group of older adults cohabitating in Miami, Florida. In 2019, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, introduced Bill 69, informally known as the ‘Golden Girls Act’ in reference to the TV sitcom. This private member's bill seeks to clarify Ontario's Planning Act application by municipalities in respect of unrelated older adults occupying a housekeeping unit, property or building.
Depending on the needs of the people involved in co-housing arrangement, there may be shared common areas or separate units within a complex of units. Co-housing may also extend to cost- sharing arrangements for ongoing expenses related to the property. This is another example of when you should involve a qualified legal representative to ensure appropriate contracts are in place to address common issues such as dispute resolution, cost sharing, property ownership structure and the sale of property.
Co-housing programs are operated in the Greater Toronto Area but at this time, no program operates in Oakville and Burlington to match interested co-housing participants.
The simplest way to explain homesharing is it’s an exchange of services between a homeowner and a housemate or renter. This arrangement is beneficial for an older adult who wants to age-in-place in their home, in exchange for services or cost-sharing with an another person.
Depending on individual circumstances, the services exchanged will vary. For example, home maintenance tasks like snow shovelling and grass cutting may be exchanged for reduced market- rent. This is another example of when you should involve a qualified legal representative to ensure an appropriate tenancy agreement exists that addresses common issues such as dispute resolution, cost sharing, nature of the services exchanged and termination.
In Oakville and Burlington, there is a formal homeshare program. The partnership of Halton Region, Halton Housing Help, and Burlington Age-Friendly Council, match older adults with housemates or renters interested in living together.
Finding senior retirement housing can be time-consuming, particularly if its not needed for the foreseeable future. Whether it’s an adult lifestyle community, co-op housing, independent living in a Retirement Home, seniors apartment (link) or a traditional leasehold arrangement, don’t wait for a crisis to start this research. Why? As noted above, many of the popular senior living options in Oakville and Burlington have wait lists, so your preferred option may not be available when you’re ready or when you need it most. If you’re not sure where to start, contact Welcome Home Transitions to discuss your options today.