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Senior Housing Options in Berks County

Over the past 10 years, the retirement-and-above-age population of Berks County has grown by up to almost 50%. As we age, our housing needs generally change as well. There are many options available in the Reading area and beyond, and each option may have its own financial requirements. Following are some options, and Attorney Scott C. Painter, P.C., is ready to help with nursing home planning, Medicaid issues, and estate and trust planning.

Continuous care retirement communities (CCRCs) offer seniors long-term contracts that guarantee lifelong shelter and access to specified health care services. In return, residents usually pay a lump-sum entrance fee and regular monthly payments. CCRC residents enjoy an independent lifestyle with the knowledge that if they become sick or have additional personal care needs, they can remain there and their needs will continue to be met. Generally, residents who move into CCRCs are independent and are able to take care of themselves.

Independent living communities are residential communities for active older adults who want an enjoyable lifestyle free of the worries and trouble of home maintenance. Many independent living communities provide a full range of activities that promote social opportunities among residents such as shopping trips, cultural event outings, educational programs, and organized gatherings. Most offer a variety of meal plans as well as the option of preparing meals in your own apartment.

Nursing care, or post-acute care, communities, provide care for individuals who need nursing care on a regular basis (but do not need to be hospitalized). The care is administered by nursing professionals under the direction of a physician. The communities are regulated by state departments of health. Many nursing care facilities also offer sub-acute, respite, rehabilitation, and other short-term needs.

Personal care communities are designed for individuals who cannot function in an independent living environment but do not need skilled nursing care on a daily basis. Personal care communities usually offer help with bathing, dressing, meals, housekeeping, and other personal care services. Personal care communities often provide residents with a broad range of activities designed to stimulate social contact. Many personal care homes also have licensed nurses and other health care professionals on staff or available on call.

Assisted living is a licensing category in Pennsylvania that allows for more stringent regulations to meet higher level-of-care needs, allowing people to age in place. Assisted Living communities are licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Aging.

Subsidized housing for seniors or handicapped individuals seeking apartments offers programs to lower the cost of rent, which is based on about 1/3 of a person’s income and is adjusted by certain expenses.

The law office of elder law attorney Scott C. Painter, P.C., is located in Wyomissing (outside of Reading, PA, in Berks County) and offers trusted legal services in the areas of elder law, including nursing home planning, trust and estate services, and veterans benefits. Scott C. Painter is a Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA®), and he is also a member of the National Association of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA).

If you have an issue or question, we encourage you to call us. With legal matters, time is of the essence. Call us for a consultation at 610-378-5140. The $300 consultation fee is waived if Attorney Painter is retained to perform services.