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Questions to Ask When Choosing a Residential Care Home

Updated: Jan 26, 2022

It can be scary when you have to consider placement for a loved one. It can also be overwhelming researching all the senior living options available. Finding the right type of care can feel like a lot of pressure, wanting to find the right place for your loved one.

This guide will help you be prepared to ask the right questions and help narrow down the options that are best suited to your loved one's needs. Here are some questions to consider when searching for a residential care home.

Questions to ask when choosing a Residential Care Home

Questions About Care

  1. What types of care are provided?

  2. How is the level of care determined?

  3. What happens if the level of care increases?

  4. Does cost increase if the level of care increases?

  5. How is medical care determined?

Questions About Services

  1. Are special services offered?

  2. What kind of services are offered?

  3. What services are covered in the cost?

  4. How are medications administered?

  5. How are prescriptions filled and re-filled?

  6. Do caregivers set a strict schedule, or is it flexible?

  7. Do residents choose when to get in and out of bed?

Questions About Amenities

  1. What amenities are offered?

  2. What are the emergency procedures?

  3. What happens if there is a power outage?

  4. Are there any future improvements?

  5. Is the common area comfortable?

  6. Is their closet or storage space?

  7. Is the facility secure?

  8. What regulations are taken for residents who wander?

Questions About Dining

  1. How is the food prepared?

  2. How many meals are served a day?

  3. Are snacks offered?

  4. What if my loved one skips a meal?

  5. What kind of meals are served?

  6. Is there accommodation for food allergies?

  7. Are there accommodations for specialized diets or dietary restrictions?

Questions About Activities

  1. What kind of activities are offered?

  2. How often are activities coordinated?

  3. Are residents required to participate in activities?

  4. How are activities coordinated?

  5. How are activities catered to the resident's interests?

  6. Are activities offered in a group setting or individually?

  7. What can residents do outside of coordinated activities?

Questions About the Facility

  1. Is the facility clean and well-kept? How often is it cleaned?

  2. What is the atmosphere of the facility?

  3. Does the facility smell?

  4. What is the temperature of the facility?

  5. Is the facility noisy or quiet?

  6. What is the layout of the facility?

  7. Are there different levels in the facility?

  8. Is the floor plan open?

  9. Is the facility wheelchair and walker friendly?

  10. Are the bathrooms ADA compliant?

  11. What are the bedrooms like? Are they shared or private?

  12. Do the bedrooms have a closet and storage space?

  13. Are the bedrooms furnished?

Questions About The Staff

  1. Is there high staffing turnover?

  2. What is the staff to resident ratio?

  3. Do the staff keep the residents well groomed?

  4. What certification does the staff have?

  5. Do the same staff work at the facility?

  6. Has there ever been a situation where a resident and staff didn't get along? If so, how was it handled?

  7. Do the staff participate in continuing education?

  8. Does the facility have a Registered Nurse (RN)?

  9. Are the staff members respectful to the residents? Do they knock before entering the bedroom?

Questions About Cost

  1. How is cost determined?

  2. Does insurance cover the cost?

  3. Are there financial assistance programs?

  4. How is payment collected?

  5. How is the bill delivered?

  6. When is payment due?

  7. Is payment monthly?

  8. Will payment rates increase?

  9. Is there a community fee?

  10. Is there a deposit?

  11. Are refunds applicable for moving out before the month is up?

Questions About the Company

  1. Is the company licensed by the state?

  2. Has the state cited the company?

  3. Why did the owner start this company?

  4. What are the company values?

Questions Related to the Family

  1. How is the family informed of any changes?

  2. What updates does the facility inform the family about?

  3. How will the company update the family, email, phone, text, etc.?

  4. What are visitation policies?

  5. What are the admission and discharge policies?

  6. What is allowed on move-in day?

  7. What are the necessities for move-in day?

  8. Do residents have access to a telephone?

  9. Are their aggressive residents in the facility?

  10. Does the facility allow pets?

  11. Does the facility allow family members to take their loved ones out for the day or part of the day?

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