What Are the Pros and Cons of Assisted Living?

Some pros and cons of assisted living include positive factors such as socialization, a safe environment and help with daily activities. Downsides include the cost of these communities, the lack of around-the-clock care and the stress of moving to an unfamiliar environment. Understanding these pros and cons will help you decide if an assisted living community makes sense for you or your loved one.

What Services Do Assisted Living Residents Receive?

Assisted living facilities provide residents with services such as room and board, assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), medication management and freshly prepared meals. Many assisted living facilities also offer opportunities for socialization, community events, local transportation, on-site fitness centers, physical therapy and other amenities. 

Does Assisted Living Make Sense for You or a Loved One?

Assisted living makes sense if you or a loved one need help with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing and grooming, and prefer a residential setting to home care. It’s a suitable option if your current home doesn’t accommodate your living needs, such as stairs or small bathing spaces. Consider this type of long-term care if you also don’t like living alone and want access to social activities and companionship close to home. 

Assisted living may not be suitable for individuals requiring a higher level of care. These communities typically do not provide regular skilled nursing care or 24-hour supervision. It’s important to discuss your care needs with a potential community to ensure its policies meet your requirements. 

How Much Does Assisted Living Cost?

Assisted living costs an average of $5,350 per month across the U.S. according to 2024 data from the Genworth Cost of Care Survey. Many people sell their homes or take out reverse mortgages to cover the expenses.

Some people also qualify for partial coverage through state Medicaid waivers or the Veterans Administration Aid and Attendance Program. Other families purchase long-term care insurance or cash out their life insurance policies to pay for assisted living.