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Weighing your options

Retirement expert discusses the choices

Created date

July 26th, 2011

As you plan for retirement living, learning about different types of retirement communities can help you make the right decisions. Answers to the following questions come from Marie Dmoch. For ten years, she s been the sales counselor at Ann s Choice, a fee-for-service, continuing care Erickson Living community in Bucks County, Pa. Before that she was with two life care communities. Q: What does fee-for-service mean? A: Fee-for-service means you only pay for services you use. At Ann s Choice you don t pay for personal care or nursing home care unless and until you need it. So our monthly fees are lower than at life care communities. A full continuum of care is available on the Ann s Choice campus at pricing competitive with other Bucks County communities. Most important, your entrance deposit is refundable. Whenever you leave Ann s Choice, once your residence is reoccupied your entrance deposit returns to you or your estate.* Q: What about fees at life care communities? A: In a life care community you pay in advance for nursing home care. It s like having a long-term care policy on you and everyone else in that community. You pay an extra monthly premium for that care even if you never need it. Q: What if you run out of money? A: Like Ann s Choice, most life care communities traditionally offer benevolent care programs. At Ann s Choice, should your finances change for reasons beyond your control, our Home for Life commitment provides several options so you can protect your future. The Ann s Choice Residence and Care Agreement has complete details. We re dedicated to supporting residents who experience an unforeseen change in their financial situation that is beyond their control. No one has ever been asked to leave our community because of an inability to pay. Q: What about amenities at the different communities? A: At 100 acres, Ann s Choice is much larger than most life care communities. We have 30 different floor plans. Life care communities might have four or five if that many. And Ann s Choice is a not-for-profit entity, so we re able to reinvest our earnings into the community to provide our residents with an exceptional lifestyle at a cost that s predictable and affordable. Our socialization is one of the best things. You re not eating dinner alone with the TV anchorman; you re eating with your neighbors. Residents start their own campus clubs and activities 150 so far at Ann s Choice. With 2,200 people residing here, there are lots of diverse interests and much more to do, including restaurants, a theater, swimming pool, and fitness center. You don t have to live your entire life on our campus, but you could because everything is here, including a staff of physicians who practice only at Ann s Choice. Most life care communities bring doctors in, but the doctors don t practice exclusively at the community. I truly believe in everything about Ann s Choice. It s such an enriching environment and a warm, friendly community. I will live here some day. * As per the Residence and Care Agreement.