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Questions to ask when touring a senior living community

Questions to ask when touring a senior living community

Just like any important life-changing event, making the decision to move to a senior living community takes a lot of thought and planning. First, do some preliminary research to find communities that are in and around your desired location. You may want to look outside your preferred area initially, to give yourself more options.

As you conduct your search, it’s important to take a tour, either in-person or virtually, to get a closer look at the senior living communities you’re considering. Take note of the overall condition of community and the grounds. Use this checklist of important questions to ask during your tour.

Upfront and ongoing costs

  • Is there an entrance fee or a security deposit required? If so, is it refundable?
  • What is the monthly rent?
  • Are utilities included? If so, which ones?
  • Is health care included or provided at an additional cost?

Community environment

  • How many residents live in the community?
  • What types of floor plans are available?
  • How many bathrooms and closets are there in each?
  • Are any appliances included?
  • Can you bring furniture and other personal belongings?
  • Do residents have input into how the community operates?
  • What is the policy about visits from family members and friends?
  • Are pets allowed?
  • Can you bring a car? What type of parking is available?
  • What types of cultural and other events are available in the area?
  • Is there a hospital and/or a health care facility nearby?
  • Am I able to keep my current doctors?

Services and amenities

  • Are transportation services available for shopping and doctor visits?
  • Are cleaning/laundry services included? Will I have a washer/dryer in my home?
  • What safety and security measures are provided?
  • Is there a full-service salon/barber shop?
  • What types of activities and entertainment are offered?
  • Are residents encouraged to offer ideas for clubs?
  • Are religious services offered? If so, what type and how often?
  • Do you offer additional storage space?

Dining options

  • What type of dining options do you offer?
  • What are the hours of operation?
  • How many meals/snacks are included in my monthly fee?
  • What types of considerations are made for residents with special dietary needs?
  • Do residents have an opportunity to suggest menu items?
  • Can you accommodate private dining for family occasions?

   Tip: When visiting a community, ask if you can enjoy a meal to taste test the food.

Levels of care

  • How many levels of care are offered within the community?
  • What is the ratio of staff to residents?
  • What types of health care providers and caregivers are there at each level of care?
  • Do residents have priority status if they require a different level of care?

After you tour each senior living community, weigh the pros and cons, and follow up with staff to clarify anything you may have missed or if you need more information. And most importantly, think about whether you can see yourself living there.

Join us for a tour

To learn more about Presbyterian Communities of South Carolina, visit to register for an in-person or virtual tour. We look forward to meeting you and answering your questions.