Located in the southern central portion of the United States, Arkansas is noted as one of the top states where seniors can live comfortably when they retire, according to USA Today. Social Security retirement income is not taxed, and property taxes are low. The cost of living in Arkansas is also much lower than the national average, so seniors can expect to pay less for groceries, healthcare, housing and transportation. The state is home to multiple hot springs attractions, including Bathhouse Row and the Garvan Woodland Gardens. There are mountain biking tours in Bentonville and scavenger hunts in Little Rock. With 217 sunny days per year, Arkansas offers plenty of time for sightseeing and exploring.

Sometimes referred to as retirement communities, independent living typically provides the lowest level of assistance for retirees. They are best suited for active seniors who are self-sufficient and can maintain their own daily responsibilities but occasionally need help with tasks. They offer services like housekeeping, meals, transportation and recreational activities. In Arkansas, independent living costs around $2,275 per month.

This guide covers the cost of independent living in the area and provides a list of resources for seniors.

The Cost of Independent Living in Arkansas

Note: To determine the average cost of Independent Living, we took the cost of Assisted Living as listed in the 2021 Genworth Financial Cost of Care Survey minus 35%, as Independent Living usually costs 30%-40% less than Assisted Living and there’s no authoritative cost data for this type of senior care.

Arkansas’ average monthly cost of Independent Living is $481 less than the national average and lower than many surrounding states. Kansas’ cost is significantly higher at $533 more per month, but Texas is only higher by $155 and Oklahoma is $62 higher. Alternately, Louisiana is cheaper by $8 and Missouri costs $494 less than Arkansas.

$2444

Arkansas

$2925

The United States

$2977

Kansas

$2599

Texas

$2506

Oklahoma

$2436

Louisiana

$1950

Missouri

When comparing the average Independent Living costs among popular cities throughout Arkansas, seniors will find a relatively large gap between some. Hot Springs mirrors the national average of $2,925, while Pine Bluff at $2,164 is $761 less per month than the national average and $280 lower than the state average. Little Rock is just under the national average at $2,917, so it’s higher than the state average by $473. Fort Smith is also higher than the state average by $59 at $2,503, but Fayetteville and Jonesboro at $2,373 are both lower by $71. 

$2925

Hot Springs

$2917

Little Rock

$2503

Fort Smith

$2373

Fayetteville

$2373

Jonesboro

$2164

Pine Bluff

Independent Living is the least restrictive residential senior community but doesn’t provide assistive services. Assisted Living in Arkansas averages $3,760 and offers more support and assistive services. Nursing Home Care offers round-the-clock medical services, hence the higher cost. Semiprivate rooms run $6,083, and private rooms run $6,692 in Arkansas. Adult Day Health Care is the least expensive option at only $1,733, but it’s not residential. In-Home Care averages $4,185 and Home Health Care averages $4,195; both offer services in private residences.

$2444

Independent Living

$3760

Assisted Living

$1733

Adult Day Health Care

$4185

In-Home Care

$4195

Home Health Care

$6083

Nursing Home Care (semiprivate room)

$6692

Nursing Home Care (private room)

Can You Use Medicare or Medicaid to Pay for Independent Living in Arkansas?

Unfortunately, you cannot use Medicaid and Medicare to help pay the monthly fee for residing in an Independent Living community. For seniors who need help with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), there may be financial assistance programs available to help cover the cost of care in Independent Living. For more information about financial assistance for those who need a higher level of care, read our guide to Assisted Living in Arkansas.

Read on for more information about using alternative means to make Independent Living more affordable, such as retirement funds, the sale of a home, etc.

Paying for Independent Living in Arkansas

Independent living is not covered by most insurance policies, instead, seniors must pay for this service out of pocket. Typical ways to pay for this service include Social Security benefits and pensions, annuity payments, housing assistance and personal funds, such as savings. Some seniors pay for assisted living with Supplemental Security Income or SSI. This income is available to seniors 65 and older who are blind or disabled who live on a limited income and have little assets. 

Independent Living Resources in Arkansas

The following is a list of services and programs designed to help seniors living at home easily make the transition to nursing home care. 

Resource
Contact
Service
(501) 682-2441
Aging and Adult Services of Arkansas is an agency that regulates all home and community-based programs for seniors and those with disabilities throughout the state. The agency also investigates reports of abuse through Adult Protective Services and the long-term care ombudsman. The goal is to ensure all seniors throughout the state receive the programs and services they need and to promote the health, safety and independence of the aging population. 
(866) 292-7165
The local area agencies on aging provide seniors with information on available programs and services within Arkansas. These programs range from transportation to and from medical appointments to home-delivered meals. 
(501) 321-6171
The Arkansas Senior Resource Directory is a publication of available services for seniors distributed throughout the state. Published semi-annually, the publication gives seniors without access to the internet information on various health topics as well as contact information to various agencies that provide assistance.
(501) 686-9164
ARChoices is a Medicaid program that provides home and community-based services for seniors aged 65 and older and adults aged 21 to 64 with a disability. These services help seniors age in place, including bathing, dressing, household chores and preparing meals. The agency can also assist with modifications to homes that help seniors move around better, for example, adding a wheelchair ramp or grab bars.
(800) 942-2677
AmeriCorps Seniors helps connect active seniors with opportunities to contribute to their communities. It also provides a list of services, including grocery delivery, for those 55 and older. The Foster Grandparent Program connects adults with a child who needs help in academics. There is also a companion program that allows individuals to provide friendship and assistance to seniors. 

COVID-19 Rules for Independent Living in Arkansas

The following information is based on research done on several government websites, including healthy.arkansas.gov. These rules apply to Independent Living Communities and other types of senior living facilities. We’ve most recently updated this data on 2/2/2022, but since COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving pandemic, contact your local senior living facility or Area Agency on Aging for more specific and up-to-date information.

Visitation Policies

Rules for Arkansas Communities

Are loved ones allowed to visit to provide emotional support?

Not Available*

Are relatives allowed to visit for end-of-life care?

Not Available*

Are residents required to quarantine after visiting with a loved one?

Not Available*

Are visitors required to wear PPE (including masks) in order to visit residents?

Not Available*

Are non-medical contractors (such as hairdressers and entertainers) allowed in senior living facilities?

Not Available*

Are visitors checked for elevated temperatures?

Yes

Are visitors required to answer questions about health, travel, and potential virus contact?

Yes

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

Outings & Social Activities

Rules for Arkansas Communities

Are residents allowed to leave (errands, visiting family, etc.) for non-medical reasons?

Not Available*

Are residents who leave required to quarantine when they return?

Not Available*

Are senior living communities required to cancel all group outings?

No

Are residents allowed to eat meals together in a common area?

Not Available*

Are residents allowed to gather in common areas for group activites?

Not Available*

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

COVID-19 Safety Measures for Staff and Residents

Rules for Arkansas Communities

Are staff members regularly required to do a temperature check?

Yes

Are staff members regularly tested for COVID-19?

Not Available*

Are staff members members regularly required to do a health and safety screening, including questions about travel, contact with positive cases, etc?

Yes

Are residents regularly screened for COVID-19 symptoms?

Not Available*

Are residents regularly checked for elevated temperatures?

Not Available*

Are residents regularly tested for COVID-19?

Not Available*

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

Find Independent Living Communities in Arkansas

Use the tool below to find Independent Living Communities near you – if you’d like to search in a specific city in Arkansas, simply put that in the search bar below.

Vitality Living Pleasant Hills

800 Napa Valley Dr, Little Rock, AR, 72211

We did a tour of Vitality Living Pleasant Hills for my mom. Everybody was friendly, and they had a lot of activities planned. I like that the meals they offer, it’s two meals a day, but they let you p … (read more)
We did a tour of Vitality Living Pleasant Hills for my mom. Everybody was friendly, and they had a lot of activities planned. I like that the meals they offer, it’s two meals a day, but they let you p … (read more)

Holiday Andover Place

2601 Andover Ct, Little Rock, AR, 72227

I would describe Andover Place as fairly nice. The rooms were small, which was kind of unexpected because I’m hoping that a queen bed would fit in the bedroom. The staff who accommodated us was excell … (read more)
I would describe Andover Place as fairly nice. The rooms were small, which was kind of unexpected because I’m hoping that a queen bed would fit in the bedroom. The staff who accommodated us was excell … (read more)

Woodland Heights

8700 Riley Drive, Little Rock, AR, 72205

<p>Woodland Heights is situated in a wooded setting with beautiful views that overlook Little Rock. Woodland Heights is a cozy senior living community located near UAMS, Baptist Health, CHI St Vincent … (read more)
<p>Woodland Heights is situated in a wooded setting with beautiful views that overlook Little Rock. Woodland Heights is a cozy senior living community located near UAMS, Baptist Health, CHI St Vincent … (read more)

Parkway Village

14300 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock, AR, 72211

Parkway Village in Conway, Arkansas is conveniently located near Highway 430 on 87 acres of park-like grounds outside of Little Rock. The facility offers three types of independent living: apartments, … (read more)
Parkway Village in Conway, Arkansas is conveniently located near Highway 430 on 87 acres of park-like grounds outside of Little Rock. The facility offers three types of independent living: apartments, … (read more)

Chenal Pines Retirement Community Now Open!

16715 Champagnolle Drive, Little Rock, AR, 72223

Chenal Pines Retirement Resort was absolutely gorgeous, but it was very expensive. They have laundry service, and you could hire somebody to help you if you have more needs, like a surgery or somethin … (read more)
Chenal Pines Retirement Resort was absolutely gorgeous, but it was very expensive. They have laundry service, and you could hire somebody to help you if you have more needs, like a surgery or somethin … (read more)

Good Shepherd Retirement Community

2701 Aldersgate Road, Little Rock, AR, 72205

Good Shepherd Retirement Community was a very good place to be. I had my own two-bedroom apartment. The staff was pretty good. They had plenty of amenities like bingo, card games, and all kinds of stu … (read more)
Good Shepherd Retirement Community was a very good place to be. I had my own two-bedroom apartment. The staff was pretty good. They had plenty of amenities like bingo, card games, and all kinds of stu … (read more)

Magnolia Retirement Center

3601 West Roosevelt Road, Little Rock, AR, 72204

My father stayed in this facility for a few weeks, until he found a better facility to live in. I did visit the facility on many occasions because I had to take my father to pay bills or go shopping. … (read more)
My father stayed in this facility for a few weeks, until he found a better facility to live in. I did visit the facility on many occasions because I had to take my father to pay bills or go shopping. … (read more)

Retirement Center of Arkansas

8900 Highway 107, Sherwood, AR, 72120

I moved into the Retirement Center of Arkansas. It’s great, it’s one house, I like it, they take care of all my needs, and they treat me good. The employees are great, I get along with them good. I’m … (read more)
I moved into the Retirement Center of Arkansas. It’s great, it’s one house, I like it, they take care of all my needs, and they treat me good. The employees are great, I get along with them good. I’m … (read more)

Parkstone Place

One Parkstone Circle, North Little Rock, AR, 72116

Parkstone Place was a nice community. The room I saw was very nice. They have pull-cords for emergencies, and they’re spacious and nice. Their dining room was nice, they have a library, and they have … (read more)
Parkstone Place was a nice community. The room I saw was very nice. They have pull-cords for emergencies, and they’re spacious and nice. Their dining room was nice, they have a library, and they have … (read more)

Willow House Housing Project

2500 Willow Street, North Little Rock, AR, 72114

This is a wonderful facility, which I would go to visit my great-grandmother many times for visits. There is plenty of parking and the landscaping is really nice. Next, the inside of the building is … (read more)
This is a wonderful facility, which I would go to visit my great-grandmother many times for visits. There is plenty of parking and the landscaping is really nice. Next, the inside of the building is … (read more)