Senior Living 101: What Is LifeCare?

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Proactive planning for your future healthcare isn’t just about preparation; it’s about empowerment. By understanding your options, you can make informed choices that prioritize your unique needs and preferences.

LifeCare offers a distinct approach to aging, breaking away from the traditional model. It allows you to embrace each chapter of your life seamlessly, preserving your independent lifestyle and fostering a strong sense of belonging within a vibrant community.

But what is LifeCare? Let’s dive into the details and explore how LifeCare can empower you to age with confidence.

What Is LifeCare?

LifeCare is a senior living contract guaranteeing access to a continuum of care within one retirement community. This means you can seamlessly transition from independent living, where you manage daily activities yourself, to higher levels of living as your needs evolve. This eliminates the stress of finding new care options later, providing both security and peace of mind.

But remember: While residents at The Clare enjoy LifeCare, it isn’t a universal feature for senior living communities. Do your research to ensure the retirement community you’re considering offers this specific contract.

Fast Facts on Senior Living Contracts

Understanding the contract you sign carries significant weight in shaping your future healthcare experience. Let’s dive into the differences between senior living contract types to help you make an informed and empowering decision.

Type A (LifeCare)

Think: Investing in your future peace of mind by prepaying for all long-term care and short-term healthcare services.

Coverage: Requires a large, one-time, upfront entrance fee and monthly service fees. Features guaranteed, priority access to all care levels (independent living, assisted living, memory care, skilled nursing, and rehabilitation) within a Continuing Care Retirement Community, also known as a CCRC or Life Plan Community, regardless of future needs.

A significant drawback of Type A contracts is the possibility of prepaying for future care that you may not require, coupled with a sizable entrance fee.

Type B (Modified LifeCare)

Think: Focusing more on affordability right now, and investing in some future care coverage.

Coverage: Requires a one-time, upfront entrance fee and monthly services fees. Type B features deeply discounted access to higher care levels, but you typically pay for a portion of the cost out of pocket. These contracts usually cover a specific level of care within a Life Plan Community for a predetermined period, with residents paying for additional care as needed.

The Clare offers a Type B contract, which provides preferred rates and priority access for higher levels of care if ever needed.

Type C (Fee-for-Service)

Think: Using a pay-as-you-go approach to senior care, maximizing initial affordability.

Coverage: Requires a one-time, upfront entrance fee (that is typically lower than a Type A or Type B contract) and monthly service fees. Independent living is guaranteed, but you pay the market rate for any care needed, usually with no guaranteed access to higher care levels, resulting in potentially significant future expenses.

7 Benefits of LifeCare

LifeCare offers a distinct set of advantages, going beyond traditional options. Below are seven compelling benefits that LifeCare can bring to your retirement:

1. Seamless transitions

As your needs evolve, transitioning to higher levels of care happens smoothly within the same community. No stressful relocations, no unfamiliar faces, just continued access to the amenities and social connections you cherish.

2. Peace of mind

Knowing future care is secured offers significant peace of mind for you and your loved ones. Costs are predictable, protecting against rising healthcare expenses. It’s also a tremendous relief to your family members knowing you’re safe, cared for, and engaged in a vibrant community.

3. Social connection

LifeCare communities foster social connections through events, clubs, and shared spaces, combating loneliness and encouraging an active lifestyle. The Clare offers resident-led clubs, vibrant social events, lifelong learning classes, and more. Whether you’re a social butterfly or prefer small groups, there’s something for everyone.

4. Maintenance-free living

Forget chores and home repairs. LifeCare communities handle everything, giving you more time to do what you truly love, whether it’s exploring new hobbies, pursuing passions, or simply relaxing without worry.

5. Amenities and services

Enjoy amenities like a Fitness Center, pool, on-site spa, multiple dining venues, scheduled transportation, and more. Your entrance fee helps ensure these amenities not only remain top-notch but also continue to evolve. The Clare is constantly seeking new ways to enhance the resident experience, adding exciting features and services based on resident feedback.


6. Financial advantages

Unlike other contracts, where expenses rise with care needs, LifeCare contracts lock in your fees, protecting you from potential healthcare cost inflation in the future. This allows for better budgeting and retirement planning.

7. Person-centered care

Many communities offer individual care plans, ensuring you receive the specific support and assistance you require. For instance, The Terraces at The Clare consistently earns exceptional ratings for its personalized care approach. Their commitment to one-on-one attention ensures each resident receives the specific support they deserve.

How Much Does LifeCare Cost?

Your one-time upfront entrance varies significantly. How much you pay typically depends on the community, location, and type of contract you choose. Some communities offer refundable entrance fees, while others don’t.

At The Clare, entrance fees begin around $595,000 and allow for predictable monthly fees, guaranteed priority access to on-site healthcare at a preferred rate, and a 70% refundability option.

Monthly fees are ongoing fees to cover the majority of your living expenses, including meals, housekeeping, and wellness programs. While monthly fees are predictable, expect them to increase modestly over time.

Take the Next Step Toward LifeCare and Embrace the Possibilities

LifeCare communities aren’t just a retirement option; they’re a proactive approach to securing your future well-being. By offering seamless transitions between care levels, strong social connections, and personalized support, they empower you to live life on your terms, regardless of your evolving needs.

Ready to take the next step? Contact The Clare online or call our team at 312-313-2421 to schedule a visit and discover how LifeCare can empower your retirement lifestyle.