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Westminster At Lake Ridge Blog

Posted: Saturday, August 18, 2018

Pricing Structure in Assisted Living

As seniors or their family members research various assisted living options, they will inevitably see statistics showing the average monthly cost of assisted living and other types of care. 

These are great tools for getting a ballpark idea of assisted living expenses, but the cost can vary dramatically among different regions, facilities and even among different residents within a facility. Understanding why begins with understanding how pricing works. 

Here is a breakdown of the types of fees you can expect: 

Upfront Fee (one time) 

Most assisted living facilities will charge future residents a reservation deposit. Sometimes referred to as a “community fee,” this deposit may be a couple thousand dollars or so and reserves the accommodations of your choice for a certain period of time. Typically, this deposit is not applied to any other charges and is sometimes refundable only if the would-be resident is unable to move into the facility for health reasons. Westminster at Lake Ridge does not have a upfront fee for Assisted Living.

 Base Fee (monthly) 

In short, this is your monthly “rent” once you live in assisted living. The cost varies depending upon the size of the residence and whether you live alone or have a companion. Most base fees are inclusive of most utilities, basic housekeeping, maintenance, and some meals. The base fee is also based on the type of services you need; i.e. independent living, assisted living, or memory care. 

Care Services Fee (monthly) 

This fee typically uses a tiered approach based upon the level of care you need (or want), and gets added to the monthly base fee. The level of care is usually based on the number of ADLs (activities of daily living) for which a resident requires regular assistance. ADLs include activities such as bathing, eating, dressing, toileting, etc. For example, the monthly cost of care services may range from $150 or so for tier one and could go up to a few thousand dollars per month for tier five-assisted living care. Accurately assessing the amount of care needed is one of the most important aspects of the decision process and also one of the more difficult to understand. The more thorough, clinical, and detailed the assessment, the better the plan of care and understanding of the cost will be. 

Example: Suppose one assisted living community says the cost per month will be around $5,000 and another says it will be around $6,000. Also suppose you actually like the higher cost facility better but ultimately choose the lower cost facility because it will save $12,000 per year. However, after about a month of living in the community you get a call saying that more care is required than originally thought and it will bump you into the next tier. Now it will cost in excess of $6,000 per month, which is more than the other facility that you liked better to begin with. 

Medication Management & Other Ancillary Services (monthly) 

Many seniors need assistance remembering to take medicines at the right time and in the right

dosage, so most assisted living communities provide medication management services for an additional fee (Westminster at Lake Ridge includes this service at no additional charge) – usually a few hundred dollars per month, depending on the complexity of the medicine administration. If needed, additional ancillary services like physical or occupational

therapy would also be charged on a monthly basis, as well as non-care related services, possibly including parking, additional meals, and select activities. 


Westminster at Lake Ridge is currently accepting assisted living residents! We offer the best of both worlds, independence with benefits. Residents will continue to live an active lifestyle but we will be there to help along the way. We provide 3 meals a day prepared by our Executive Chef, access to 5-star skilled nursing, rehab services voted Best in Prince William County, located in a wooded, natural settings, housekeeping, and 24- hour access to care support. We also now offer respite services.  If you would like to learn more about our fee structure or set up an appointment to visit, please call 703-436-8122 or visit our website 



The above article was written by Brad Breeding of myLifeSite and is legally licensed for use.


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