Retirement Home or Retirement Community – What’s The Difference?

man researching retirement

Many people are getting confused when it comes to differentiating between retirement homes and retirement communities because of the ‘almost similar’ sense that the two portray. Simply put, retirement homes and retirement communities are specially designed for individuals who are nearing the age of ‘retirement’ and already facing the prospect of revising their living arrangements – whether they want to have a companionship of others in a similar position, or feel overwhelmed by the home upkeep and cut off from social amenities or transport.

To understand the difference between the two types retirement residence options, below is some helpful information that you need to know:


Retirement Home

A retirement home, or sometimes known as a ‘senior care home’ is a term that is used to define a nursing home for aged individuals. It is a multi-residence housing facility that is specially intended for those retired senior citizen. In some states, seniors have the freedom to live independently in the privately owned residence or retirement homes with minimal support or/and able to fund themselves. Retirement homes are sometimes accompanied with care & services for seniors, and can also include facilities for recreational activities, gatherings, and some form of hospice or health care center.

Commonly, retirement homes can be paid on a rental basis, just like an apartment, or can also be bought perpetually just like condominium, unlike in retirement communities where residents are provided with separate autonomous homes. However, unlike retirement communities, retirement homes differ primarily in the medical care given to the seniors. 

The provincial government doesn’t regulate the retirement residences, though they are subjected to fire & building code regulations and public health, nor does the gov’t set standards for the retirement or operation of the residences. In retirement homes, the resident is the one paying for the accommodation, services and care without any contribution or subsidiary from any non-governmental or government organization. The rates that are being charged for the accommodation, as well as the services that are provided aren’t fixed by the government.

Senior care homes are also normally less segregated from regular city life – they are often nestled into residential areas much like an apartment building, where retirement communities usually have a large grounds on which they are built.


Retirement Community

retirement community is a housing complex that is designed for those senior citizens who can generally take care of themselves. However, assistance or support from home care agencies are hand selected to provide top quality care in many communities. Top of the line socialization and activities are often provided in the community as a regular part of the lifestyle, where in retirement homes socialization in some cases can amount to a community television set. Unlike in retirement homes, retirement communities are commonly aged-restricted, thus, you should be aged-qualified or partially/fully retired in order to be in the community. Here, seniors share amenities and services. Furthermore, retirement community doesn’t offer personal care services compared to retirement home where services rendered by nurses or medical care amenities are available for those individuals who needs them. But the great thing about retirement communities is that, they offer worthwhile socialization for adults who wants to have more companionship with other of the same age.

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It’s a wonderful place! Everybody is really friendly. I’ve been here for a few years now and really enjoy it.