Senior man and woman playing tennis

Life Care vs. Rental Communities: How Are They Different?

There are many questions to ask when choosing a retirement community, but one of the most common is, “Should I choose a Life Care community or a rental community?” Here’s what you need to know about the differences between these two types of senior living communities and how to decide which option is best for you.

What is a Life Care Community?

At a Life Care community you pay an upfront entrance fee and a predictable monthly service fee to cover all housing, services, amenities and events available to you as part of the community. These fees will remain predictable even if you require a higher level of care in your lifetime.

What is a Rental Community?

A rental community offers seniors a flexible, month-to-month contract that does not include access to higher levels of care at the same rate. With a rental agreement, there are no long-term contracts, entrance fees or penalties for leaving the community. However, should one’s care needs change, the resident will need to pay market rate for healthcare costs.

Should I Live in a Life Care or a Rental Community?

Each senior living situation has pros and cons. Here are some considerations for each option to help you determine which may be the best for you.

Why to Choose a Life Care Community

The benefits of a Life Care community are numerous. With a Life Care community, you will pay a predictable monthly rate that guarantees you access to higher levels of care.

While the initial entrance fee and monthly fees may be higher with a Life Care contract, there can be a long-term financial benefit. Even if your care needs increase over time, your costs remain predictable. Additionally, depending on your contract, you will have priority access to any on-site services such as assisted living, memory care, skilled nursing care and rehabilitation services as needed, now or in the future.

Best for:

  • Seniors who value predictability
  • Seniors who want to control their future care needs today  (70% of older adults will need a high level of long-term support and services in their lifetimes) 

Why to Choose a Rental Community

Rental communities vary greatly and are available for a wide range of lifestyles and budgets. Senior living rental communities typically do not usually feature an entrance fee, however, if additional levels of care are needed, the resident will need pay unpredictable, higher market rates for care. 

Best for:

  • Seniors who want to keep initial costs as low as possible
  • Seniors who can absorb potentially large cost increases if future health needs change

Explore Life Care Options at Oak Trace

We invite you to explore our Life Care community at Oak Trace. Here, all residents enjoy premium services and amenities tailored to their specific needs and passions. Our Life Care residents enjoy priority access to all of our onsite healthcare services and advanced levels of living, including rehabilitation, assisted living and skilled nursing services. With multiple residence options, a vibrant community and exciting future plans, we’d love to welcome you to our comfortable retirement village in the Chicago suburbs.

Contact us today to speak with a member of our team, or complete the form below.