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The 10 Best Assisted Living Facilities in Santa Fe, NM for 2024

New Mexico’s capital city of Santa Fe is a scenic community set in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. It has about 85,000 residents, making it the fourth most populous city in the state, and it has a large senior community that makes up nearly a quarter of the population. Its clean air and warm, dry climate make it a good option for those with respiratory issues, and declining crime rates provide peace of mind for active seniors. While its cost of living is relatively high, numerous community-based programs help control senior care costs.

Assisted living facilities in Santa Fe enable older adults to maintain their privacy and independence while enjoying low-maintenance living. These residential facilities provide daily meals and snacks, social and recreational programs and personal care as needed. The Genworth 2020 Cost of Care Survey discloses that this type of care costs $4,800 per month, which is high compared to state and national averages. 

This guide provides more information on senior care costs in Santa Fe, including how assisted living fees compare to rates in other cities and alternative local options. It also gives an overview of the benefits and drawbacks of living here and a resource list for local seniors. 

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Assisted Living Facilities in Santa Fe, New Mexico

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What to Consider About Assisted Living in Santa Fe

The New Mexico Department of Health regulates assisted living facilities in Santa Fe and the rest of the state. Local facilities follow rules regarding the scope of care, care planning, medication management, staffing and public financing options. The department enforces compliance with rules and regulations through an initial licensing process and regular inspections.  

Benefits and Drawbacks of Assisted Living in Santa Fe

  • Santa Fe is among the more expensive cities in New Mexico to live in, which may impact retirees’ standard of living. The city’s overall cost of living is about 27% higher than the statewide average. Housing costs are almost double the state average, and miscellaneous expenses such as entertainment, clothing and restaurant meals are about 10% higher here than in the typical New Mexico city. However, healthcare expenses are low compared to the national average and may offset higher living expenses. 
  • New Mexico is among the few states that tax all types of retirement income, including Social Security benefits. Sales taxes are also high, but property taxes are affordable, which may benefit retirees who maintain ownership of their homes.  
  • Santa Fe’s climate is warm and dry, which may appeal to older adults who enjoy being outdoors. The city rates 7.5 on a 10-point comfort index, indicating that its weather is more comfortable than the typical U.S. city, which rates 7. July highs are in the mid-80s and winter lows are near 20 degrees, and residents see about 15 inches of rain and 26 inches of snowfall annually.  
  • Santa Fe’s air has a low level of pollutants, which may benefit those with asthma, allergies or cardiovascular conditions. On a 100-point air quality index, the city scores 72, which is 14 points higher than the national median.  
  • Historically, crime rates in Santa Fe are high compared to national averages, with violent crime rating 24.2 and property crime rating 57.3 on a 100-point crime index, compared to respective national rates of 22.7 and 35.4. However, Santa Fe’s crime rates are trending downward, even as crime becomes more prevalent statewide.  
  • Santa Fe’s Transit Division operates three public transportation programs. Santa Fe Trails operates bus routes throughout the city and in some parts of the county. Santa Fe Ride provides curb-to-curb transportation for older adults unable to use the regular bus services, and Santa Fe Pick-Up Shuttle operates free shuttles around the downtown region and to Museum Hill and Canyon Road.  

Paying for Assisted Living in Santa Fe

Santa Fe is a relatively costly option for assisted living. Local facilities charge about $4,800 per month for housing and services, which is high compared to the state median of $4,050 and the nationwide average rate of $4,300.  

The Cost of Assisted Living in Nearby Cities

Santa Fe is the most expensive surveyed city in New Mexico for assisted living services, with facilities charging approximately $4,800 per month for care. Rates in Las Cruces are comparable to the national median at $4,248, and in Albuquerque, care costs are consistent with the state average at $4,050. Farmington is the cheapest option in the state at $3,900.   

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The Cost of Other Types of Senior Care

While assisted living fees in Santa Fe are high compared to rates in other cities, most other local senior care options are more expensive. Seniors who live in their own homes may opt for adult day health care in a daytime community. Local cost data isn’t available for this type of care, but statewide, monthly fees average $2,513. Home-based care, including homemaker services and specialized home health aide services, costs $5,148 per month. Nursing home care is the costliest option at $8,060 for semiprivate rooms and $8,243 for private rooms.  

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Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Santa Fe

Eligible seniors in Santa Fe can receive aid through the Centennial Care program and Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Learn more about these programs, plus who’s eligible, on our Assisted Living in New Mexico page.

Financial Assistance in New Mexico

More Ways to Pay for Assisted Living

While many families use their own funds or personal assets to pay for assisted living, there are plenty of additional options to cover these costs. Some additional ways to finance assisted living costs include:

  • Veterans Benefits
  • Life Insurance Policy
  • Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Reverse Mortgage

For more information about different ways to finance assisted living, visit our Assisted Living in New Mexico page.

Free Assisted Living Resources in Santa Fe

Those seeking assisted living services in central New Mexico have access to several programs and agencies to help them make the best decisions for their care. The region is served by organizations that provide options counseling, assistance with obtaining public benefits and social and recreational programs for older adults.  

Santa Fe Division of Senior Services(505) 955-4721The city’s Division of Senior Services provides a range of services for older adults in the community through five local senior centers. At these locations, those aged 60 and over get one-on-one help locating and applying for services in the community such as case management, durable medical equipment loans and transportation. The centers also host daily congregate meals and social and recreational programs. Most programs and activities are free or available at a suggested donation.  
Non-Metro Area Agency on Aging(866) 699-4927The designated Area Agency on Aging for Santa Fe provides numerous programs to older adults in the region, including congregate meals, nutrition counseling and case management. It also administers health insurance counseling for older adults to help them understand their Medicare benefits, determine whether they qualify for Medicaid or a waiver program and compare long-term care insurance policies.  
New Mexico Legal Aid(833) 545-4357New Mexico Legal Aid provides free civil legal aid throughout the state. Through this organization, older adults get help with resolving issues related to public benefits, including denied Medicare and Medicaid claims, canceled health insurance policies and overpayment. Its legal experts also help seniors understand assisted living contracts and handle issues related to the quality of care.  
Santa Fe Vet Center(505) 988-6562The Santa Fe Vet Center assists veterans and their families access benefits they qualify for, including those that can help cover assisted living services. The center can also help them obtain services in the community, such as transportation or healthcare.  
Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program(866) 451-2901The statewide long-term care ombudsman program advocates on behalf of older adults living in residential care facilities. The local ombudsmen make unannounced visits to facilities to ensure compliance with state-mandated regulations. They can also help seniors and families compare local facilities and identify options for paying for services.  

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Santa Fe

Santa Fe-area assisted living communities must adhere to the comprehensive set of state laws and regulations that all assisted living communities in New Mexico are required to follow. Visit our Assisted Living in New Mexico page for more information about these laws.

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in New Mexico

Reviews of Communities Nearby

Assisted Living


I am a friend or relative of a current/past resident

Review of Brookdale Santa Fe

My friend moved into Brookdale Santa Fe. We chose it because they had availability at the time. When we went and visited, the residents seemed very happy, so that meant a lot to us. The staff...

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Assisted Living


I visited this facility

Review of The Montecito Santa Fe

What I like about The Montecito Santa Fe is how beautiful it is. It's set up very nicely. It's open, and there's more light. It was bright and very nice. They had nice facilities, like hot tubs and...

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Assisted Living


I visited this facility

Review of Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe

The location of Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe was not good because it was close to the freeway and the grounds were kind of messy. The housing around it, if anybody walked outside, they would...

Provider response

Thank you for taking the time to tour Pacifica Senior Living Santa Fe. Selecting the right fit for your loved one is not an easy task and we appreciate that you considered us. If your circumstances...

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