Observing the current residents can tell you a lot about a facility, so do your best to try and interact with them when you visit. When you do take notes on the following:
- Do they seem genuinely happy?
- Do they speak kindly of the staff?
- Are they active?
- Do they seem like people you would want to be surrounded by?
- Are they hanging out in groups or do they seem isolated?
These questions will give you good insight into two things. One, you will be able to see if the individuals are people you could socialize with and potentially befriend. You see, not all assisted living facilities house the same people and it’s possible the group in one facility may be more similar to you than other places. Even if the staff seem professional and caring, a place may not be a right fit if you cannot see yourself getting along with the current residents. Two, you will get a better feel for the staff and how they treat their guest. If guests seem genuinely unhappy and do not have anything nice to say it could be an indication that they are not well taken care of. When observing the above, use discretion and try not to assume things. Also, take into account that some people tend to be less happy than others, regardless of age or living situation. Don’t let one disgruntled person ruin an otherwise great facility.