5 Things to Know Before Researching Senior Living Online

things to know before researching

When it comes to healthy aging, quite honestly, there’s a lot to do. You’re supposed to make sure to keep your body active and your brain engaged all while maintaining your social connections as well. Sure, the benefits to your overall well-being are worth the effort, but retirement is supposed to be a time with less responsibility on your plate, right? Well, it turns out that in senior living you can have your cake and eat it too, so to speak. Here’s how programs like our Vivid Life make keeping active, engaged, and connected easy and fun! 

Benefits of Healthy Aging 

Good things happen when you focus on healthy aging. In addition to feeling better overall, which in and of itself is a win, other benefits of keeping active, engaged, and connected include:  

  • Improved ability to do everyday things ​ 
  • Reduced impact of illness and chronic disease​ 
  • Enhanced mobility, flexibility, and balance
  • Improved sleep
  • Increased energy level
  • Reduced feelings of depression and stress
  • Increased feelings of happiness and self-confidence
  • Reduced risk of cognitive decline 
  • Increased mental adaptability and cognitive reserve 
  • Improved memory recall and problem-solving skills 
  • Improved concentration and attention to detail  

How Senior Living Can Help 

At home, particularly when living alone, it can be hard to stay as active, engaged, and connected as you’d like. From lack of opportunity to lack of motivation to lack of transportation to mobility challenges, and more, it’s tough, we get it! That’s why we created the Vivid Life program in our senior living communities. It’s composed of three parts: Vibrant Body, Vibrant Brain, and Vibrant Connections. Here’s what each entails:  

Vibrant Body We offer amenities such as a state-of-the-art fitness center, a pool, walking trails, gardening opportunities, and even a dog park to help you stay active. A sample of activities includes:  

  • Walking club – Daily walks at different outdoor locations using pedometers to measure steps. 
  • Yoga – At least once per week for gentle yoga, and once per week for mindful breathing. 
  • Fitness classes – At least two times per week using a variety of hand weights, resistance bands, and circuit-type exercises. 
  • Tai Chi – At least once per week with a live instructor. 
  • Non-traditional exercise – Dancing, gardening, etc. at least two times per week. 
  • Physical games and sports – Golf, putting, bowling, croquet, bocce, and ping pong available daily with organized events one to two times per week. 

Vibrant Brain We offer monthly calendars filled with classes, events, creative arts, and enrichment opportunities to help keep you engaged. A sample of activities includes: 

  • Visiting lecture series – Twice per month with topics such as cultural, historical, local interest, career-oriented, etc. 
  • Creative art series – At least one per week with a theme that runs 3-6 weeks, such as poetry writing, storytelling, painting, digital photography, etc. 
  • Learning series – At least three times per month with an emphasis on learning something new such as foreign language, sign language, technology, hobbies, etc. 
  • Games – At least one time per week and may include poker, bridge, Scrabble, etc. 
  • Mindfulness – A meditation class once per week and gratitude discussion group twice monthly. 
  • Church service – At least once a week through visits by local churches. 
  • Stress reduction – At least once per month class that offers deep breathing exercises, nature walks, music appreciation, spa-type treatments, etc. 

 Vibrant Connections We offer resident-led clubs, social events, outings and volunteer opportunities for any interest to help you stay connected. A sample of activities includes: 

  • Outings – At least twice per month and may include going to concerts, art shows, museum visits, theatre productions, etc. 
  • Intergenerational programming – At least once per month and focuses on building relationships between young adults/children and residents. 
  • New resident welcome party – At least once per month to formally introduce all new residents, and includes ice breakers, social games, etc. to encourage connection. 
  • Philanthropic program – At least once per month provide residents the opportunity to give back to the community, such as volunteering for a local food bank or pet shelter. 
  • Resident-led clubs – May include game clubs, professional clubs, common interests, etc. that meet at least monthly.  

What’s more, it’s all right outside your door (or transportation is provided offsite) and all in a supportive environment with home maintenance, housekeeping, and restaurant-style dining freeing your time to make it even easier to stay active, engaged, and connected. 

Learn more about Vitality Living’s Vivid Life programs. Or find a Vitality Living community near you today to schedule a tour. 



Seeing is believing- right? That’s why for most big purchases, we like to try before we buy: so to speak. You test drive a car. Go to open houses, tour college campuses, visit a furniture showroom to see which couches are most comfortable. The list could go on, and senior living is no different. 

Realistically you likely can’t visit every senior living community you want to consider, especially if you live in a large city with a range of options; this is why you need to narrow your list. The best way to do that is by researching senior living online first. Here’s what you need to know to make your search the most productive.

  1. Understand your options – Many people don’t realize that there is more than one type of senior living. Options include active adult living, independent living, assisted living, and memory care. It’s important to identify which is the best fit for you before looking at communities because not all of them offer each type of senior living. Learn more about the types of senior living in our previous blog.
  2. Be specific when researching senior living online – With so many senior living options out there it’s important to be specific right off the bat. We recommend you search by the type of senior living (active adult living, independent living, assisted living, or memory care) that you determined fits best and your preferred location. For example, “assisted living in the city, state.”
  3. Look closely at community websites – Head to the senior living community websites that come up based on your search. Make sure to check out- not only their services and amenities, but also their videos, image galleries, activity calendars, and floor plans. Many will also have other resources available such as financial calculators, self-guided assessments, how-to guides, and even blogs like these to help you in researching senior living. 
  4. Follow them on social media – You’ll find that most senior living communities are active on social media. This is where you’ll get a true sense of their personality, and what daily life is like for the residents there, so following the senior living communities you are interested in is a must.
  5. Consider online reviews, too – In researching senior living, don’t forget about online reviews. But, remember to consider them with a grain of salt in gauging the reputation of the communities you’re considering as you don’t want to base a decision on that alone, but rather as a piece of the overall picture.

Once you’ve completed researching senior living online, ideally, you’ve found two to three communities in which you’d like to tour. Most senior living communities now have the option to tour online or in person. Either way, you can schedule your tour by contacting the communities directly or scheduling through their website. Then, you’ll answer a few questions so the team can gain an understanding of your needs to personalize the tour experience. 

For more information about researching senior living communities, download our Choosing a Senior Living Community Guide.

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