Visiting a senior housing community is an absolute must before deciding where you or your parent will live. And planning multiple visits to the community is even better. A scheduled tour will allow you to ask a staff member important questions (and possibly try a meal), while a later, unannounced visit may give you a better feel for what life is like at the community.

Depending on the type of community you’re looking for, there may be different Happy senior couplequestions that need answered. That’s why we’ve created checklists for touring an assisted living community, memory care community, senior care home or skilled nursing facility. Our Care Advisors can also help answer questions about touring any community, and can help set up multiple tours, no matter where you live. Care Advisors can be reached by phone, every day, by calling the number to the left of this article.

No matter what type of community you are seeking, there are certain things worth keeping an eye on:

The Outside: If the community is in a bad neighborhood, doesn’t have enough parking or has a run-down exterior, those could be bad signs for what’s to come. If, however, the community is housed within a nice building, with beautiful landscaping, on a safe and quiet street, that should give you the green light to proceed.

The Common Areas: These areas should be bright, inviting and easily navigable. These are the areas that will play host to a community’s meals and activities, so there is plenty to explore here. These areas should also give a good glimpse into what community life is like, how active the residents are and how you or your loved one will spend free hours.

The Apartments: Whether it will be you or your parent living in a senior housing community, being comfortable in the living quarters is vital. They must have enough safety features to provide security and peace of mind, and should have a good amount of closet and storage space. Make sure to inspect the bathrooms, and if you have a four-legged friend, find out if the apartments and community are pet-friendly.

There’s a lot to take in, which is why we recommend taking more than one visit to a community, and making sure at least one of those visits is unscheduled. We also encourage you to print the appropriate checklist for the type of community you are visiting (assisted living; memory care; senior care home; skilled nursing facility). And remember, help from our Care Advisors is only a phone call away.