Assisted Living Costs & Tips
Finding the right assisted living community for yourself or a loved one can be a stressful process. To help you and your family make an informed choice, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions below. Should you have additional questions about assisted living, please feel free to reach out to our team at 913-246-3690 at any time.
Q: What Does Assisted Living Cost?
A: Assisted living costs vary from community to community and each assisted living community structures pricing a little differently. However, the average cost nationwide for assisted living care is slightly over $4,000 per month according to the Genworth’s 2019 Cost of Care Survey.
Q: What's Included in the Cost for Assisted Living?
A: At Avenue 81, our private, assisted living apartment homes start at $4,000 per month. This base price includes all the following:
- A private apartment home
- Weekly housekeeping
- Three farm-to-table meals each day
- Laundry services
- Basic utilities
- 24/7 nursing staff with registered nurse supervision
- Emergency alert devices
- Weekly housekeeping
- Scheduled transportation
- Social activities
- Daily opportunities to socialize with staff and neighbors
- & Much More!
Q: What happens if a Resident Runs Out of Money?
A: This is one of the most frequent questions we hear, and it’s very important to understand the answer. At Avenue 81, we benefit from being part of a network of family owned & operated communities, so although our community does not accept Medicaid at this time, we have sister communities in Lenexa, Shawnee, Overland Park, and Olathe who do. Should any Avenue 81 assisted living resident exhaust their private pay resources after a year or more of living at our community, we will work with the resident and their family to secure placement at a nearby assisted living community in our network.
It’s important to note that not all assisted living communities will accept Medicaid nor will they assist with placement at a nearby community. If you’re at all worried about you or your loved one exhausting their financial resources, we recommend you ask what happens should funds be depleted.
Q: What is an Entry Fee or Buy-In?
A: Some communities charge entry fees or buy-ins. These fees can be hundreds of thousands of dollars, and are generally financed by the sale of the senior’s home. Oftentimes, entry fee communities offer partial refunds of these entry fees to the senior’s estate, but plans can vary greatly.
Avenue 81 Assisted Living does NOT have an upfront buy-in, but we do charge a one-time $2,500 community fee. We feel seniors should have access to their assets and spend their money however they see fit, so that’s why we do not charge a buy-in for assisted living or independent living.
Q: What are Other Costs to Look Out For?
A: This is a great question, and where cost comparison can become difficult. The reality is that every community prices services differently. So whereas weekly housekeeping and scheduled transportation is included at Avenue 81, other assisted living communities may charge a small fee for it. Some communities may charge for meals, but at Avenue 81, all three meals are included in the monthly fee.
We encourage you to ask communities for all their common additional charges. In fact, you can even ask for a few sample monthly statements to get a feel for what current residents are paying.
No matter what community you select, the senior will still needs to pay for the following:
- Health insurance and/or supplemental health insurance
- Prescription medications & over-the-counter drugs
- Doctor’s visits and co-pays associated with them
- Personal hygiene products (including incontinence supplies, if they are needed)
- Other ongoing expenses like life insurance policy premiums
Q: What is a Care Level?
A: Like many assisted living communities in the Kansas City area, Avenue 81 charges additional fees for higher “Care Levels.” The higher the Care Level, the more one-on-one care the resident requires and therefore the higher the monthly cost. Care Levels at Avenue 81 range from Care Level 1 to Care Level 5; Care Level 1 is provided at no extra cost each month. Care Levels 2 thru 5 are an additional monthly cost.
Our staff determines each resident’s Care Level during a health assessment prior to move-in day. Care Levels are re-evaluated over time should care needs change.
For more details about each Care Level, we encourage you to call us at 913-246-3690
Q: Can Long-Term Care Insurance be Used for Assisted Living?
A: Yes! Most long-term care insurance policies can be used to cover some or all of the cost of assisted living care. If you or your loved one has a long-term care policy, you’ll need to reach out to the company who issued your policy and work with them to verify the details and secure payment. In many cases, all that is required is a statement from a physician regarding the care services needed and a copy of the resident’s care plan.
Q: What is the Aid & Attendance Benefit?
A: The Aid & Attendance Benefit is a federal program that offers reimbursement for assisted living, memory care or skilled nursing to veterans of foreign wars. To quality for the Aid & Attendance Benefit, the veteran must have served in one of the following conflicts during the time periods listed below:
- World War II: December 7, 1941 – December 31, 1946, inclusive. If the veteran was in service on December 31, 1946, continuous service before July 26, 1947, is considered World War II service.
- Korean conflict: June 27, 1950 – January 31, 1955, inclusive.
- Vietnam era: The period beginning on February 28, 1961, and ending on May 7, 1975, inclusive, in the case of a veteran who served in the Republic of Vietnam during that period. The period beginning on August 5, 1964, and ending on May 7, 1975, inclusive, in all other cases. (Note: From February 28, 1961 to Aug 4, 1964, vet must have boots on the ground.)
- Persian Gulf War: August 2, 1990, through date to be prescribed by Presidential proclamation or law.
Should you or your loved one qualify, you’ll need to work with the department of Veteran’s Affairs to secure reimbursement for care services. Spouses of veterans who qualify are also eligible for this benefit – even if the veteran has passed away.