Common Myths About Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs)
Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), or Life Plan communities, are often misunderstood. In reality, CCRCs offer older adults a more social, independent and active lifestyle — while ensuring access to any level of support they may need. Life Plan communities also give you full financial security against rising healthcare costs.
CCRCs offer peace of mind to older adults and their family members that they often miss out on from aging in place. Ultimately, older adults must identify their needs and consider CCRCs as early as possible to prepare for potential changes to their health that alter the level of support they need.
In This Article
- What are CCRCs?
- Common Myths About CCRCs
- Concordia CCRC
- Next Steps
What are CCRCs?
A continuing care retirement community (CCRC), also known as a Life Plan community, is a senior living community that spans multiple levels of support. The typical living options offered in these communities fall on a spectrum based on the amount of support needed. Our options at Concordia in Oklahoma City include:
Often, older adults will seek residency in a community where they have a neighborhood of friends, engaging programming, luxurious amenities and the security of healthcare support — all at their doorstep. If their needs change, residents can move to the necessary level of support based on their current needs.
CCRCs aim to alleviate the stress of everyday responsibilities from older adults and caregiving challenges from their family members or friends. Once these responsibilities are lifted, residents can focus on engaging in the activities they love and build connections with others in the community — allowing them to live a happier and healthier life.
Common Myths About CCRCs and Life Plan Communities
Despite the clear benefits of living in a continuing care retirement community, many misconceptions cause older adults to delay moving to one. Let’s look at the top myths about CCRCs with help from our residents at Concordia.
1. CCRCs are only for older people who can no longer take proper care of themselves.
Some people view CCRCs as places older people move to when they need help completing basic tasks such as bathing, eating or moving around.
Though the communities have living options that offer this type of support with basic tasks, CCRCs and Life Plan communities are comprised of residents at many different levels of living, many of whom need little support with daily living. With the guarantee of receiving additional support if you were to need it, you won’t have to relocate or look outside for health support.
CCRCs are built for people who want to enjoy a fuller life with access to engaging programming, an active community with a wide range of accessible activities and the presence of support at any level needed.
2. It’s not as convenient or pleasant as aging in place.
In a similar vein, some people believe that “aging in place” at a family home is preferable to moving to a CCRC. This is a common mistake, often fueled by the fear of leaving something familiar.
While leaving a family home can be a difficult and emotional transition, staying in place is often isolating for older adults and incredibly stressful for their family members, especially as their needs change.
CCRCs offer considerable benefits to older adults when compared to aging in place. Costs often pile up for caregivers when medical services, daily care and home modifications become necessary.
Concordia resident testimonial from Virginia Olds, who moved out of her family home: “I am thankful we had conversations in advance and my family knew my plan. I am also thankful my decision may eliminate any additional stress on them if my health condition/needs should change.”
3. It’s too expensive to pay for quality CCRCs.
Some older adults default to living at home because of the misconception that living at a top-quality CCRC is too expensive. Though the fees may seem intimidating, many people overlook that they include a multitude of services such as:
- 24/7 access to support
- On-site medical team
- Learning programs
- Exterior maintenance and landscaping
- Access to amenities and social activities
- And more
All of these benefits are often included in one convenient and consistent fee. Further, peace of mind can come from living in a Life Plan community because your care is guaranteed, even if you outlive your assets.
Ultimately, this fee encompasses everything that the residents gain by moving to a CCRC – from the social opportunities, the safe environment and security knowing that they no longer have to worry about any home owning expenses.
When reflecting on her decision to make a move to Concordia, resident Val Reed shared,
“For years my lovely home was my major asset and investment but when I decided to make a move to Concordia, I saw it as an investment in my future and a gift to my children.”
4. CCRCs are too sad and boring to live in.
Another common misconception about CCRCs is that they lack activities and the atmosphere of a lively community. In reality, this can’t be further from the truth, since these communities are created and run with the intention to form an active lifestyle for their residents.
Residents can personalize their living areas, set their schedules and participate in daily programming with other residents. These include group trips, movie screenings, game nights and more.
Concordia resident testimonial from Celia Ruff, after her husband lost his battle with Alzheimer’s: “I’m still in my apartment and enjoy nearly everything Concordia offers. I have a great circle of friends and many of them met Art and were part of our story. The exercise classes, programs and outings keep me busy so it would be safe to say – I’m not bored at all!”
5. Residents at CCRCs lose their independence and connections with friends.
Finally, some people worry that they will lose their independence and social connections if they move to a CCRC.
Residents are encouraged to be independent as well and often have pets, work and host visitors. Independence is also cultivated in the nature of the environment at a CCRC.
Since residents are left with fewer responsibilities, they naturally have more time to focus on their hobbies, relationships and other things that truly matter to them.
Resident testimonial from Barbara Erickson: “I am now enjoying more of the things I once had to sacrifice. I have a garden again and play my piano more often and even entertain my family every week for dinner.”
Concordia is a Life Plan CCRC Community
Our Oklahoma City continuing care retirement community, also known as a Life Plan community, offers residents a multitude of options dependent on the level of support they need. Our supportive community includes unique offerings such as family learning workshops, health monitoring, concierge services, transportation and so much more.
Contact us today to learn more about our signature program options for those interested in joining our community.
- Read about the different living options at Concordia, including , assisted living, skilled nursing & rehabilitation, memory care and long-term care
- Learn about our community’s pricing structure