learn what other users had to say about

the Price of Assisted Living Facilities

Submitted by  
$ 2050
May 2008
Burbank, CA
Mid-level assisted living in a larger retirement hotel atmosphere  more... close row

Description of service

Mid-level assisted living in a larger retirement hotel atmosphere. Services include a private room and bath, much like a hotel room. Housekeeping and laundry services are included, as is basic medication management. Meals are served 3 times a day in the central dining room and there are lots of activities available to residents such as shopping, exercise, bingo, movies, religious study and lots more. This is not a facility for those with dementia or that require a wheelchair. The residents are fairly active through moderately frail, using canes and walkers. Age of residents range from 60-100, but most are in their 70's and 80's. Payment is all-inclusive, meaning that it covers all of the services offers. Private telephone service is extra, as is cable/satellite TV. This is not the case with every assisted living facility in the area, though. Some will charge a base rate for the room rental, and charge extra for each needed service.

Review of Service

This is a great service for it's price in the area. This is for a more modest facility, not one of the super upscale ones. Residents vary widely from low income (on SSI) who share a room with another resident through fairly wealthy individuals who prefer a more simple residence. The assisted living living services are top-notch -- but remember, these residents won't need a great deal. Most need medication management and light dressing or bathing help in the privacy of their rooms. Some have incontinence care, too. Staff is helpful and they care for the residents. This is, honestly, one of the lower prices you'll find for assisted living facilities, especially where the services are all-inclusive. It is well worth it, too. The building is older and some rooms are in need of renovation, but it is clean and does not smell at all. The dining room is small and the food can be a bit too "institutional" at times, but they try to listen to the residents and give them food they enjoy.


If you're looking at assisted living, make sure that you look at several different places and ask a LOT of questions. Take notes, too. If possible, seek the advice of a referral service because most of these places are not published in the phone book. A good referral service will provide you a free list of facilities that are tailored to your needs and budget. Don't be fooled by a referral service that claims to licensed by the State of California to provide assisted living facilities for you -- there is no such license available. If they publish a license, it just means that they can bill Medi-Cal for placements to skilled nursing facilities. It has nothing to do with assisted living facilities.

If you find an assisted living facility in the phone book and find them to be too expensive or just not quite right, ask their marketing director for the name of a referral service that they trust. Just about all of them will be familiar with a good service. Remember these services will not charge you to get a list of facilities. These companies earn their money from the facilities based on their referrals not from you. Most of the agencies work with all of the facilities, though, so they don't usually play favorites. A good agency will take the time to talk to you about what you need and supply a list of 4-10 places (or so) that fit your needs. If an agency gives you a list of 10-15 or more, then be careful because that means they may not be acting in your best interest. Don't be afraid to ask them questions!

If you don't want to use a referral service, you can consult the California Community Care Licensing Division of the Department of Health Services (CCLD). They have an online database of all of the licensed facilities in the state. The downside to using the website is that you might be making a lot of fruitless phone calls to facilities that are full or not appropriate for your needs. It's basically like going through a giant phone book of assisted living facilities. Helpful, but you will do a lot of work.

There are also several different guide books available from hospital discharge planners or social workers that list some of these facilities. They are like apartment guidebooks, only for assisted living. You might also find these books at Senior Centers, Adult Day Health Care centers and other social service agencies. Facilities pay to be in these books. The books are good and can get you started, but they aren't very comprehensive and often only the most expensive facilities are found in them.

The most important thing to remember when looking at an assisted living facility is how well it matches the needs of the potential resident.

Things to know:

- Medi-Cal/Medicare will not pay for assisted living in California, though there is one small exception to that. Assisted living facilities are all private businesses (or charities) and are considered non-medical. Medi-Cal/Medicare will only pay for medical services. There is a program called the Assisted Living Waiver Pilot Program (ALWPP) that may allows certain Medi-Cal/Medicare recipients to living in assisted living if they meet certain strict requirements. This is a small program, though, and limited to just a few facilities, but is worth looking at if the resident has no private money available and would otherwise end up in a skilled nursing environment.

- If the resident has a diagnosis of dementia of some kind, then it will limit the type of facility he/she can live at. Many facilities are prepared for this, but some of the more independent retirement communities will not be able to accept residents in that condition.

- There are very few communities in Southern California that are considered "continuing care" -- which means they have both assisted living and nursing components in the same locations. The majority of seniors do not need skilled nursing and can live in assisted living for the rest of their lives.

- Assisted living communities range from large resorts to 6-bed board and care homes. All of them are considered assisted living, though they often offer varying levels of care. As a general rule, the smaller homes will have residents that are much more frail and have advanced dementia.

- Prices for assisted Living communities range greatly, too. Remember, these are private business and the services vary from home to home. Private rooms can range anywhere from $1,800 to $3,000 per month for modest accommodation and $3,500 - $5,000 per month and more for more upscale communities.

- Some limited number of communities will accept residents who receive SSI (Supplemental Security Income). As a general rule, those residents will be required to be fairly independent and to share a room with another person.

- Most assisted living communities in California are tailored for those age 60 and up. However, California allows the facilities to have up to 25% of their residents be under age 60. They are not required to do so, though. Most of the lower priced communities will be more willing to admit younger residents.

$ 4700
Apr 2008
Holbrook, New York
Monthly fee for an 84 year old resident  more... close row
$ 1500
May 2008
Akron OH
Service for the price is very good  more... close row
$ 4800
Jan 2008
Teaneck, New Jersey
Monthly cost for comprehensive assisted care facility  more... close row
$ 1000
Apr 2008
Detroit MI
Assisted living is a good step before a nursing home  more... close row
$ 2000
Apr 2008
Atlanta, GA
Aunt in assisted living facility  more... close row
$ 1500
May 2008
Livonia MI
Assisted Living Facilities have many names  more... close row
$ 4000
Jan 2007
Cherry Hill, NJ
Mother enjoys her assisted living facility  more... close row
$ 3000
May 2008
Chicago, Illinois
Hit and miss service for grandmother  more... close row
$ 5000
Sep 2007
Pine Bluff, AR
Monthly charge for a semi-private room  more... close row
$ 2200
Mar 2008
Van Nuys, CA
Shared room and prepared meals  more... close row
$ 680
May 2008
orlando, florida
Paying for assisted living from disability check  more... close row
$ 200
Apr 2008
Merritt Island, FL
Price per day for brother who had stroke  more... close row
$ 800
Jan 2007
Clarksville, Tn
Grandmother happy with assisted living  more... close row
$ 750
Apr 2008
La Crescent, MN
Monthly cost of assisted living  more... close row
$ 700
Jan 2008
Merritt Island, Florida
Assisted living for ex mother in law  more... close row