Assisted Living in Virginia

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Families looking for assisted living in Virginia (VA) have a wide array of communities to choose from, since estimated that there are more than 30,000 assisted living communities serving seniors across the U.S., and over 428 statewide. The state is also home to a rapidly growing number of senior citizens, with adults over 65 making up an estimated 15.6 percent of the population. A resident in an assisted living community in Virginia will pay $4,508 per month on average.

Average Monthly Costs

States near Virginia

$5,106.00 Maryland
$4,863.00 Virginia
$4,000.00 US
Genworth lists the average cost of a private, one bedroom unit in an assisted living community in Virginia as $4,863. This places Virginia on the higher end of the scale at about $900 over the national average, and about $0 lower than the median cost of assisted living in nearby states.

Compare Monthly Care Costs

When it comes to care options, assisted living is just one of several choices available to seniors. Some care options, like part-time in-home care or independent living, may cost less, while others like memory care or skilled nursing are likely to cost significantly more. Seniors can speak with their medical practitioners to receive guidance on what level of care will best suit their needs and abilities.

Nursing Home Care


Assisted Living


In-Home Care

Average Monthly Costs

Cities in Virginia

$5,516.00 Richmond
$5,130.00 Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Radford
$5,109.00 Virginia Beach, Norfolk,
$5,040.00 Winchester
$5,001.00 Charlottesville
$4,644.00 Staunton, Waynesboro
$4,521.00 Roanoke
$4,480.00 Harrisonburg
$4,037.00 Lynchburg
$3,538.00 Rest Of State
When estimating the cost of assisted living, it's important to know that average prices can differ significantly between various parts of Virginia. For example, assisted living rates in areas such as Richmond are at least $600 more than the state average of $4,863, but in areas like Lynchburg, you're saving on average $800. The most affordable region in Virginia for assisted living is Rest of State at $3,538.

What You Should Know About Assisted Living in Virginia

Unlike in most other states, assisted living in Virginia is split into two levels of care: residential living care and assisted living care. The first of these is appropriate for seniors who can handle most of their activities of daily living (ADLs) independently and who need only minimal help with cleaning, errands and other chores. Residential living care helps preserve the maximum of independence and privacy, while still providing help with the ADLs that have become difficult for seniors.

Assisted living care is usually more hands-on, and aging citizens who've opted for this level usually have 24/7 staff nearby to help them bathe, dress, cook, shop and carry out the rest of their daily routine. Privacy and freedom are still priorities for the seniors who live in Virginia's assisted living care communities, but safety and comfort are emphasized more at this level.

Many, though by no means all, of Virginia's assisted living care communities offer multiple levels of care for their residents. Some have skilled nursing and/or memory care annexes on the property that tend to seniors' needs through illness and injury. These are not strictly assisted living care, though many residents cycle from one level to another, sometimes returning to assisted living care after their rehab or nursing period is over or moving into memory care at the same facility if they develop Alzheimer's disease or dementia. Please visit our Virginia Memory Care page for more information.

Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Virginia

In Virginia, low-income seniors can apply for assistance to pay for the costs of assisted living care from two different government programs:

Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE)

Virginia's Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) offers a full-spectrum approach to the issues many aging citizens have paying for their health care and assisted living needs. This program works in conjunction with federal Medicare and Medicaid funds to cover most of the costs seniors are likely to incur. Once you're enrolled in the program, PACE picks up all or some of the cost of the following:

  • Adult day primary care
  • Dentistry
  • Emergency room care
  • In-home care
  • Hospital admissions
  • Laboratory and X-ray services
  • Meals delivered at home or in a care setting
  • Specialist care
  • Nursing home admission
  • Nutritional counseling
  • Occupational and physical therapy
  • Some prescription drugs
  • Preventive health care
  • Caregiver training, support groups and respite care for caregivers
  • Social work relating to community care
  • Transportation to and from the PACE center for activities or medical appointments
h4>Who Is Eligible?

You might be eligible to join PACE if you meet the program's criteria. To join, you must:

  • Be age 55 or over
  • Live in a PACE-designated region of Virginia
  • Meet the program's medical standards for either nursing home care or living in the community with the appropriate level of assistance

How to Apply

Eligible seniors can learn more about PACE by visiting the Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services website. To apply, residents are encouraged to visit Covered Virginia online, where you can also see your options for low-income health insurance, managed plans and state-approved HMOs.

More Ways to Finance 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. Visit our 9 Ways to Pay for Assisted Living page for more information.

Free Assisted Living Resources in Virginia

Seniors in Virginia who are moving into assisted living care communities for the first time can feel like they need some extra help to get through the transitional period. These agencies exist to help aging citizens cope with changes in life like this, as well as provide general assistance to seniors, regardless of their current living arrangements.

Virginia Area Agencies on Aging

The Virginia Area Agencies on Aging offers comprehensive assistance and advocacy on behalf of seniors in the state. Operating more than 600 regional offices nationwide, this organization provides information to seniors and caregivers about issues relating to senior care, as well as referrals to long-term care providers social workers who specialize in the needs of aging citizens, money management programs and free or low-cost meal services, such as Meals on Wheels and food banks all over the state. There are 25 local offices:

Alexandria Division of Aging & Adult Services

4401 Ford Avenue, Suite 103, Alexandria, VA 22314
(703) 746-5999

Appalachian Agency for Senior Citizens, Inc.

P.O. Box 765, Cedar Bluff, VA 24609-0765
(276) 964-4915 or (800) 656-2272

Arlington Agency on Aging

2100 Washington Boulevard, 4th Floor, Arlington, VA 22204-5703
(703) 228-1700 or TTY: 703-228-1788

Bay Aging

P.O. Box 610, Urbanna, VA 23175
(804) 758-2386

Central Virginia Alliance for Community Living, Inc. (PSA 11)

501 12th Street, Suite A, Lynchburg, VA 24504
(434) 385-9070

Crater District Area Agency On Aging

23 Seyler Drive, Petersburg, VA 23805
(804) 732-7020

District Three Governmental Cooperative

4453 Lee Highway, Marion, VA 24354-4270
(276) 783-8150 or (800) 541-0933

Eastern Shore Area Agency on Aging- Community Action Agency, Inc.

P.O. Box 415, Belle Haven, VA 23306
(757) 442-9652 or (800) 452-5977

Fairfax Area Agency on Aging

12011 Government Center Parkway, Suite 720, Fairfax, VA 22035
(703) 324-5411

Jefferson Area Board for Aging

674 Hillsdale Drive, Suite 9, Charlottesville, VA 22901
(434) 817-5222

Lake Country Area Agency on Aging

1105 West Danville St, South Hill, VA 23970-3501
(434) 447-7661

Local Office on Aging, Inc.

P.O. Box 14205, Roanoke, VA 24038-4205
(540) 345-0451

Loudoun County Area Agency on Aging

20145 Ashbrook Place, Suite 170, Ashburn, VA 20147
(703) 777-0257

Mountain Empire Older Citizens, Inc.

P.O. Box 888, Big Stone Gap, VA 24219-0888
(276) 523-4202 or (800) 252-6362

New River Valley Agency on Aging

141 East Main Street, Suite 500, Pulaski, VA 24301
(540) 980-7720

Peninsula Agency on Aging, Inc.

739 Thimble Shoals Boulevard, Building 100, Suite 1006, Newport News, VA 23606
(757) 873-0541

Piedmont Senior Resources Area Agency on Aging, Inc.

1413 South Main Street, P.O. Box 398, Burkeville, VA 23922-0398
(434) 767-5588; (800) 995-6918

Prince William Area Agency on Aging

5 County Complex, Suite 240, Woodbridge, VA 22192
(703) 792-6400

Rappahannock Area Agency on Aging, Inc.

460 Lendall Lane, Fredericksburg, VA 22405
(540) 371-3375; (800) 262-4012

Rappahannock-Rapidan Community Services Board

P.O. Box 1568, Culpeper, VA 22701
(540) 825-3100; TDD: (540) 825-7391

Senior Connections- Capital Area Agency on Aging, Inc.

24 East Cary Street, Rickmond, VA 23219
(804) 343-3000; (800) 995-6918

Senior Services of Southeastern Virginia

5 Interstate Corporate Center, 6350 Center Drive, Suite 101, Norfolk, VA 23502
(757) 461-9481

Shenandoah Area Agency on Aging, Inc.

207 Mosby Lane, Front Royal, VA 22630-2611
(540) 635-7141; (800) 883-4122

Southern Area Agency on Aging

204 Cleveland Avenue, Martinsville, VA 24112-4228
(276) 632-6442

Valley Program for Aging Services, Inc.

P.O. Box 14205, Waynesboro, VA 22980-0603
(540) 949-7141; (800) 868-8727

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Virginia

Virginia's Department of Social Services has established a comprehensive set of regulations that assisted living care communities statewide must follow. Below are some of the key state regulations governing assisted living operations you should be familiar with.

Assisted Living Service Plan Requirements

In Virginia, assisted living community staff are required to create an individual service plan for each resident. This is most often done when the resident moves into the community, and they must be updated at least once a year. Plans are drafted by facility staff in conjunction with the resident and the resident's doctor, family, caregiver and other concerned parties. Plans are split into major sections, according to needs and how the care is to be delivered. Individual care plans cover:

Activities of daily living (ADLs) refer to residents' personal needs, which must be delivered on an individual basis. These include:

  • Bathing
  • Dressing
  • Toileting
  • Transferring
  • Bowel and bladder control measures
  • Eating and feeding assistance

Instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) are more group-oriented activities and include:

  • Meal preparation
  • Housekeeping
  • Laundry
  • Money management

Ambulation refers to how the resident can get around, both inside and outside of the community property.

Hygiene and grooming goes over the plan for helping residents with personal care needs, specifically:

  • Shampooing, combing and brushing hair
  • Shaving
  • Trimming fingernails and toenails (if medically appropriate)
  • Skin care
The functions and tasks section of the plan lays out measures the resident might need for independence and contact with the outside world. In this category are:
  • Arrangement for transportation
  • Arrangement for shopping
  • Use of the telephone
  • Correspondence

Assisted Living Admission Requirements

The State of Virginia sets certain requirements for admission and retention of assisted living care residents. Before a senior may be admitted to one of the state's licensed communities, staff must certify that:

  • an individual treatment plan has been completed and submitted for the resident.
  • the resident's personal care physician has agreed that assisted living is the appropriate level of care, as opposed to memory care or skilled nursing.
  • the resident has had a mental health screening.
  • staff have met with and designated a contact person who can act for the resident in the event of emergencies and/or incapacity.

Assisted Living Scope of Care

The State of Virginia licenses assisted living care communities to house residents and provide limited amounts of non-medical assistance. To keep licensure, communities must stay within their designated scope of care, neither falling short nor exceeding it. At a minimum, Virginia's assisted living communities must provide safe, clean and comfortable living conditions, emergency assistance in case of a fall or other injury, regular meal service and help with ADLs. Because assisted living is not considered medical care, staff may only assist residents taking medication if the resident can largely self-administer the treatment, such as pills or oxygen.

Assisted Living Medicaid Policy

Some assisted living communities in Virginia accept Medicaid as a form of payment from prospective residents who qualify for benefits under PACE. Seniors in Virginia who receive SSI/SSDI may be able to use that to cover their housing costs. Remember to check with your community if you plan to pay for assisted living using these benefits, and be sure to ask staff at the communities you’re considering whether they can process PACE, Medicare, Medicaid and/or SSI/SSDI benefits as payment.

Assisted Living Facility Requirements

Virginia requires assisted living care communities to meet a variety of facility requirements to ensure safety and accessibility for residents and visitors. In general, the physical requirements for assisted living buildings must meet or exceed the standards for the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code. Care-specific requirements include:

  • Nonslip surfaces in all common areas
  • Season-appropriate outdoor furniture available to residents in pool and patio areas
  • Enclosed walkways between rooms and common areas, such as dining halls and game rooms
  • Central heating and air conditioning for every room
  • Fixed thermostats or movable thermometers to monitor temperatures; temperatures during the day are to be set at 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Night temperatures no lower than 68 degrees.
  • Single-occupancy rooms may have their own temperature controls, provided the resident can safely operate them
  • Facilities are to be free of insect, rodent and other vermin infestations

Medication Management Regulations

Staff at Virginia's assisted living care communities may be called on to assist residents with some aspects of medication management. All staff must be trained in the appropriate procedures and scope of care allowed for assisted living in Virginia. Not all medical interventions are allowed, but some assistance can be given for largely self-administered medication. Examples include reminders to take medication on time, application of medicated topical creams and ointment, providing residents with over-the-counter medication that has not been prohibited by a doctor, such as analgesics or decongestants, and some emergency interventions, such as rescue inhalers for residents having an asthma attack. Residents can also generally get help crushing up pills if they usually mix their medication into food or drinks but need assistance with the preparation.

Staffing Requirements

Virginia law requires a minimum of two staff members to be awake and on duty at all times when residents are present. For live-in communities, this is a permanent staffing requirement. For facilities with sizable populations, the staffing requirements scale upward, but the general requirement is to keep enough staff on hand to operate the facility without leaving residents without immediate assistance, if needed.

For excursions outside of the community, such as medical visits and day trips, the assisted living community must designate an 'appropriate' number of staff to travel along with residents. This requirement is also geared toward having enough people on hand to ensure residents' safety throughout their trip.

Staff Training Requirements

Administrators at Virginia's assisted living care communities must, within three months of hire, undergo at least six hours of training in working with residents who have cognitive impairments. Staff members must undergo similar training within four months of their hire date. Both staff and administrators must also have at least two hours of training in the care needs of cognitively impaired residents during their first month on the job. Annual recertification is required for each of these training modules, with evidence of completion submitted to the state.

Background Checks for ALR Staff in Virginia

Background checks are standard for all employees who have access to the grounds of a Virginia assisted living care community. This check is included in the standard character and reputation investigation communities must conduct prior to each hiring. Individuals with felony backgrounds and/or domestic violence convictions, as well as certain offenses related to moral turpitude — such as sex crimes, whether felony or misdemeanor — are permanently barred from employment in Virginia's assisted living properties.

Requirements for Reporting Abuse

Elder abuse includes any instances of physical, sexual or emotional abuse, caregiver neglect or financial abuse. Managers of assisted living care communities are mandated reporters under Virginia state law and must report any suspected case of elder abuse, regardless of their opinion about the credibility of the allegation or evidence. Staff members are also trained to recognize and report cases of abuse or neglect.

Assisted Living Facilities in Virginia



Top-Rated Caring Stars Winners in Virginia’s Caring Stars award program recognizes the best assisted living facilities across the U.S. based on reviews from family caregivers and older adults. This award is meant to help older adults and their loved ones find the best assisted living or in-home care option in their area. The list below shows up to 10 listings that have won the most Caring Stars annual awards in their state, sorted by their current overall average rating. For a complete list of Caring Stars winners for each year, please visit our Caring Stars info center.


Commonwealth Senior Living at Georgian Manor

Chesapeake, VA $$$

21 reviews


Chancellor's Village

Fredericksburg, VA $$$$

23 reviews


Sunrise of Arlington VA

Arlington, VA $$

15 reviews


Sunrise of Alexandria

Alexandria, VA $$

21 reviews


The Willows at Meadow Branch

Winchester, VA $$$

24 reviews


Spring Hills Mount Vernon

Alexandria, VA $$

29 reviews


Pheasant Ridge Senior Living

Roanoke, VA $$$$

18 reviews


Aarondale Assisted Living and Retirement Community

Springfield, VA Cost Levels

18 reviews


Heritage Green of Hanover

Mechanicsville, VA $$

16 reviews