Using a Certified Senior Advisor when making a move... Especially out of state!
Why you should use a Certified Senior Advisor to assist in a move for you or your loved one... especially out of state. It's absolutely necessary to keep your sanity and stress level low!
I recently was helping a family who just moved their Mom from an Assisted Living in California into another Assisted Living, here in Washington. The daughter, on her own, went and toured a few communities near where she lived and chose a great community. But, unfortunately when her Mom arrived, the new community immediately realized they could not provide the level of care she needed. They were told that the Mom would need to immediately move out. But now where?
As I mentioned this was a great community – so they gave the family my name and number to help guide them through the process to find the right community and solution! How did this happen? Could having to move Mom two times in the first month, along with all the stress and financial strain, have been prevented? Most likely, yes.
What happened in this case, and many times, is that the community is not given the true picture of the care the resident is needing and/or receiving. Either the family truly doesn’t know because they live far away, or are uninvolved in the loved ones day to day life, or the family doesn’t disclose everything out of fear the community won’t accept them.
Because, Mom was already living in an Assisted Living community the family was relying on their Nurse to share that information with the new community. The information was not correctly passed along, because their Nurse was not involved in Moms day to day care, and she was going off what her care plan stated. To make matters worse, this care plan was nearly a year out of date.
The caregivers who actually provide the daily care may not tell the Nurse that a resident is gradually requiring more help. They may worry that the Resident that they have drawn close to, would be charged more in care costs or potentially be kicked out due to needing additional care. (I’ve also seen many Nurses/Communities not share everything because they are desperate to get rid of their “problem” resident, and paint a little different picture so another community is more likely to accept them)
The other issue at hand is all Assisted Living communities have Community Relations/ Marketing Directors and/or Sales Managers whose positions depends on occupancy or number of move in’s they get every month. In fact, they earn commission based upon the number of move in’s monthly! It is a high pressured sales position within all senior living companies – with huge expectations coming down from the corporate management team. Needless to say, many will do whatever it takes to get your Move In, even if they know it will be short term and is the wrong fit. *Let me say that this was not the case in this situation- this community did not receive the correct information.
The way to prevent these situations from happening is to work with a Certified Senior Advisor or Senior Housing Specialist. They will ask in depth questions about your loved one’s care needs and what a typical day looks like. This is in order to develop a more holistic picture of the Senior needs. If the family does not know, they will spend time asking the Senior themselves, or the care staff where they are currently at.
Certified Senior Advisors or Senior Housing Specialists are also experts in knowing what care levels the communities provide, what their specialties are, along with any limitations. They will guide you to the ones that are truly the right fit and can meet the needs of the Senior now, and in the near future. Since they don’t work for a particular company or community, and instead work like a Buyer’s Real Estate agent – they represent the best interest of the Senior. Senior Advisors and Senior Housing Specialists will not try to steer, or lead you into a move that is not the right solution for your loved one!
Making the change from living at home to a care community is one of the most stressful things you will ever go through. Add the fact that you are making the move across a few states are guaranteed to give you some sleepless nights and maybe a few tears too. To reduce stress for everyone involved including the communities, consider utilizing the services of a Certified Senior Advisor or Senior Housing Specialists. I guarantee they will be a valued partner and advocate in finding you the right solution the first time!
Meet our Certified Senior Advisors here!