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Retirement Living 101: What Are Your Options?
Gail Rubin, The Doyenne of Death, Funeral Expert Gail Rubin, The Doyenne of Death, Funeral Expert
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Albuquerque, NM
Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Senior retirement and medical care

Nurse and patient in the garden of modern senior home with daily care.

Knowing where to live in retirement can be one of the most critical adult decisions you’ll ever make. You have many options to consider. Every option for seniors has benefits and disadvantages.

This post explores several retirement living options you can take, so you can be ready once the time to make a decision arrives. But first, it’s crucial to consider the many factors in making your decision. Read on to learn more.

What Are The Factors To Consider When Making A Decision? 

There are several factors to remember since this is not a decision to be taken lightly. Here are some of them: 

  • Cost – It’s essential to know the cost and if your retirement funds can support it.
  • Location – You may choose a place close to family and friends so it’ll be easier for them to visit you or for you to visit them.
  • Services and amenities – Would you like a place that includes housekeeping, transportation, and meal preparation? In addition, is it important to you if the facility has amenities like a gym or swimming pool? 
  • Level of care – Is your mobility a concern, or would you need constant assistance? 
  • Reputation – Look for facilities known to deliver high-quality service to their residents. 
  • Staffing – Does the facility have sufficient and well-trained staff? 

You must consider and weigh all these factors when choosing your retirement living. If you are in California, it may help to check Newport Mesa senior center and other assisted living facilities in your area.  

Here are some options for your future retirement living arrangements: 

Staying At Home 

Staying at home has been the most prevalent option. Many people favor aging in place. It is a widely accepted practice. 

Aging in place is the concept of remaining in one’s home for as long as possible. It emphasizes the importance of maintaining familiarity and social connections. Experts say that familiarity reduces a senior’s isolation that can lead to depression. 

Aging in place is a cost-effective option. Nonetheless, it requires careful planning and modification of the home to ensure the senior can live safely and independently.  

Moving In With Family Or A Granny Flat 

Children who would like their senior parents close by can let them move into their home or build a granny flat within the property area. This arrangement can ensure a connection between the senior and the family, and the senior can get much-needed support anytime. Yet there are some drawbacks with this living option. 

There may be a lack of privacy and an invasion of personal space that may happen periodically. Seniors can be persistent and assertive about what they like, which can affect the family dynamics. Some situations may lead to conflicts and widen the gap among family members. 

Independent Living in Retirement

Seniors can live independently among people their age in communities offering services like housekeeping, transportation, meal plans, and social activities. Seniors who value independence and want to be surrounded by like-minded people may opt for this.  

There are many types of independent living options, depending on your lifestyle and budget. You may select an upscale community that provides luxury services like a hotel, and there are affordable independent living communities too.  

Assisted Living in Retirement

Seniors who need assistance with everyday tasks, but not medical care, could opt for assisted living. In assisted living communities, help with bathing, dressing, grooming, and medication management can be provided 24/7.  

Nursing Homes 

If a senior requires high care and constant medical attention, placing them in a nursing home is necessary. The facility offers expert and professional 24-hour care and supervision. Licensed medical care professionals, registered nurses, and certified nursing assistants are available in nursing homes to ensure that all medical needs are attended to promptly.

Memory Care Facilities 

 Seniors living with dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, or other memory impairments need specialized care and therapy. Memory care facilities provide the needed support they require for their condition.  

Seniors with memory impairments may experience improvement, particularly if the illness was diagnosed early. The facility offers personalized care, including cognitive therapies and memory-enhancing activities that may improve their memory or slow cognitive decline.  

Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) 

Seniors in retirement

CCRCs have facilities for assisted living, nursing homes, and independent living, all in one big community. The community exists because the senior doesn’t have to transfer far should their health circumstances change. For example, if they get better in their chronic illness and won’t need nursing care, they can move to the next unit with amenities fitting an assisted living facility. 


The co-housing option is best for seniors who have a socially active lifestyle. The facility is a collection of small private homes or apartments clustered around shared spaces such as gardens, community areas, and others.  

Final Thoughts 

If you want to live a comfortable and secure life in your golden years, you must know what options you can take once you retire. The eight options listed here can help guide you to a retirement living situation that works for you. 

Gail Rubin, CT, is author and host of the award-winning book and television series, A Good Goodbye: Funeral Planning for Those Who Don’t Plan to Die, Hail and Farewell: Cremation Ceremonies, Templates and Tips, and KICKING THE BUCKET LIST: 100 Downsizing and Organizing Things to Do Before You Die.

Rubin is a Certified Thanatologist (that's a death educator) and a popular speaker who uses humor and films to get the end-of-life and funeral planning conversation started. She "knocked 'em dead" with her TEDx talk, A Good Goodbye. She provides continuing education credit classes for attorneys, doctors, nurses, social workers, hospice workers, financial planners, funeral directors and other professionals. She's a Certified Funeral Celebrant and funeral planning consultant who has been interviewed in national and local print, broadcast and online media.

Known as The Doyenne of Death®, she is the event coordinator of the Before I Die New Mexico Festival and author of a guide to holding such festivals. Her podcast is also called The Doyenne of Death®. She produces videos about the funeral business and related topics. Her YouTube Channel features more than 600 videos!

Rubin is a member of the Association for Death Education and Counseling, the International Cemetery, Cremation and Funeral Association, Toastmasters International and the National Speakers Association. Her speaking profile is available at eSpeakers.com.

Gail Rubin has been interviewed about funeral planning issues in national and local broadcast, print and online media. Outlets include The Huffington Post, Money Magazine, Kiplinger, CBS Radio News, WGN-TV,  and local affiliates for NPR, PBS, FOX, ABC-TV, CBS-TV and NBC-TV. Albuquerque Business First named her as one of their 2019 Women of Influence.

Sign up for a free planning form and occasional informative newsletter at her website, AGoodGoodbye.com.

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Name: Gail Rubin
Group: A Good Goodbye
Dateline: Albuquerque, NM United States
Direct Phone: 505-265-7215
Cell Phone: 505-363-7514
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