group home for elderly

Serving Illinois and Wisconsin

Last week I got a call from my sister.  Her mother in law is searching for a place for her father to live.  They called me for my help because this is what I do all day here in Chicago.  The only catch was this was in North Carolina...

I of course agreed to help right away, and while it took me about 1/10 of the time it would have taken her to make all those calls herself, I am still surprised how hard it is to find senior living.

First of all, I don't think the consumer knows what to ask for. 

In this case, the dad is currently doing a respite stay in Long Island at a senior community there.  He is considering coming back to North Carolina as his other daughter is re-locating there as well.  The family kept telling me they were looking for "assisted living" but when I asked more questions about where he was living now I realized he was living in what we in the industry would consider "independent living".  So if she started calling all of the places in NC that offer "assisted living" she would not be getting her dad that same thing he is living in and enjoying in Long Island.

So I started my search with this in mind and was surprised how hard it is to find all the options in a given area.  If the company does not have a presence on the web and you are searching from out of town, you may never find half of the places.

I made some calls.  Luckily, I know exactly what questions to ask to save time.  Half of the places I called had someone available to answer my questions and give me pricing.  The other half I had to leave messages with.  Of that half only two people returned my calls.  Its been 6 days now and I don't imagine I will hear from the ones I had left message for if I have not at this point.  I emailed a couple of places and did not get a single email response back.


So how do you know if you are finding the best place if you can't even connect with some places?

I guess this lesson only validated how valuable the service my company provides to families looking for senior living in Chicagoland.  And since its free, the price can't be beat!

Needless to say, I finally talked to one place that I think will be an excellent fit.  The location is great.  The size is great.  The reputation of the company is great.  The price is well within the budget and this independent living home also offers assisted living should the need arise later on.

Of course, after doing all of this research, I was informed that dad and the other sister have "changed their mind" for now.  I just want everyone to know that this is not UNCOMMON.  However, the work has been done and now I have a wonderful excuse to go back down to North Carolina to visit my new niece.  I can tour some of the communities down there and see how they compare.  And when the family is finally ready or a crisis occurs, we will be ready to make and educated decision very quickly.

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