senior living

Senior Living Buildings

Senior Living 101!

Senior living buildings, also known as senior apartments, are more popular than ever and for good reason. There are over 29 in Dakota county alone. Full disclosure I am somewhat bias because my mother lives in a senior living apartment and loves it! It’s not the perfect fit for everyone but it is a good option for many people. Some of the advantages include saving money, eliminating lawn and home maintenance, a built-in community and easier access to socializing with a relevant peer group. Companies design these buildings for seniors and most focus on accessibility and creating a sense of community for their residents.

These Apartments Have Tons of Variety

There is variety when it comes to size, price, setup, amenities and social spaces. Some apartments are studios while others have multiple rooms. Another less common setup is called suite-style which consists of a private, or sometimes shared bedroom, with common living spaces, kitchen, and bathrooms. The amenities offered also vary drastically but most offer, onsite laundry, individual thermostats, bathrooms with safety features, kitchens or kitchenettes in each apartment, scheduled bus visits to the building and social spaces to meet and spend times with other residents. The residents of these apartments have as much variety as the buildings. It’s like the best of living in a college dorm without the drawbacks of homework, youthful indiscretion, or the drastic lack of privacy!

Independent Living and Assisted Living

There are the two types of senior apartments. The difference between the two is vast. Independent apartments cater towards more active and independent seniors. Assisted apartments, as you might have guessed, offers more assistance to its residents with daily tasks. Independent buildings offer less one on one help and include more access to social spaces. Assisted living buildings have more optional amenities like apartment cleaning, medication administration, nursing help, personal care assistance and so on. The socialization in these buildings are usually organized classes or groups while Independent buildings offer space for residents to host their own social events.

Financial Assistance

There is a program provided by the Dakota County Community Development Agency, or Dakota County CDA, that allows seniors 62+ to pay 30% of their household income as rent. The county funds 29 buildings with this program that are either 55 or 62+. This rent program includes some restrictions such as a minimum of $423 and maximum of $758 for a one-bedroom apartment. For a two-bedroom apartment the minimum is $627 and the maximum is $960. Ten of these buildings have a flat rate rent option of $643 for a one-bedroom and $788 for a two-bedroom. This program used to have a two-year waiting list. Recently I learned the CDA closed the wait list due to the amount of people applying for the program. The Dakota County CDA’s website states they expect it will be at least 1 year before their wait list reopens.

senior living

At the moment Apple Valley has the most buildings but each suburb south of the cities has a least one option. Please visit the Dakota County CDA’s website for listings of where their buildings are located >>

For more related information and advice read some of my other posts.

  1. 5 Ways to Update on a Budget
  2. Decluttering in 3 Steps
  3. 6 Positives and Negatives When Selling a Home in Spring Market


If you have any questions, please let me know, I’m always happy to help. You can give me a call at 612-889-6496 or send an email to [email protected].

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