1839 senior living facilities in Texas
There has been an increase in senior population in Texas as well as the numerous new facilities for senior living in the Lone Star State. Texas is a large state with a variety of small towns, rural areas, and big cities. Will the increase in the senior population make the “Lone Star State” the best state for senior citizens to retire?
Most states, Texas included, have realized that it is far less expensive to care for a person in their homes than it is to care for them in nursing facilities, and that is also where most people would rather be. To try and keep people in their homes or at least in a community setting, programs are offered in Texas to help maintain and restore independence for these individuals. There are 28 Texas AAAs in the state who help provide and access to services to Texas seniors over the age of 60 and their caregivers. Although the AAAs are available to any senior in Texas or caregiver, priority is given to those with the greatest economic and social need. This includes: minorities, those with low-incomes, those who live in rural areas, those with limited English, people with Alzheimer’s or related disorders, and those who are at risk of being placed in a nursing facility.
Along with the Area Agency on Aging, there are also Texas Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ARDCs) which are supposed to help Texas residents navigate the requirements system. These centers give help to Texans in all 254 counties in the state and simplify the complicated system for them.
In Texas, home and community-based waiver services (HCBS) have been available to some individuals through Medicaid waiver programs. However, as the numbers of seniors in Texas increase and the seniors who wish to remain in their houses get frailer, the number of caregivers increase as well. Texas is finally encouraging people to utilize the services offered rather than wait until they need nursing facility care. A list of the available programs can be found at https://hhs.texas.gov/hhs-services.
Some of the programs that are offered by the state of Texas include:
The state of Texas has been behind the curve when it comes to caring for the growing senior and disabled population, although things are changing so that they can try and remain on par with other states. If you are looking for other services or information then calling the Texas Area Agency on Aging or the ARDC would be a good place to begin.
The cost for an Assisted Living Facility in Texas averages about $3,515 per month in the state (almost $42,200 per year), however, the cost for care often increase depending on the amount and magnitude of services that the client requires, as well as the city you choose. For example, Texas residents with dementia and Alzheimer's disease will pay higher assisted living fees. However, the expense of an Assisted Living Facility in Texas is still much lower than comparable costs of Texas nursing homes, where even a semi-private room costs $54,020 per year on average, and a private room costs around $72,000.
Assisted Living in Texas is quite a bit more expensive than Adult Day Health Care, which averages about $8,500 per year. Moreover, assisted living facilities are cheaper than hiring a Texas Home Health Aide, which currently costs $43,472 annually on average, based on a 44-hour workweek. An Assisted Living Facility provides 24-hour care, which would be approximately the equivalent of 3.8 Home Health Aids working 44-hour weeks, which would be a cost of close to $170,000 annually. These costs will only continue to rise, as it is projected that by the year 2030, assisted living in Texas will cost $63,801 - an increase of almost $19,000.
Here are assisted living costs in 24 of Texas's popular cities:
The state of Texas has Medicaid Waiver programs to help elderly and disabled people with their monthly expenses; however, there are eligibility requirements for these waivers, both functional and financial.
First, let’s discuss Medicaid eligibility criteria in Texas as well as the difference between Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. SSI is a federally-funded program funded by general tax revenue, NOT by Social Security Taxes. It is designed to help people who are aged, blind, and/or disabled who have little or no income and it provides cash to people to meet their basic needs, including food, clothing, and shelter.
Medicaid, on the other hand, is a state-funded program and the financial eligibility requirements change yearly. You must be pregnant, a parent or relative caretaker of a dependent child (or children) who is under 19, blind, have a disability, or have a family member in your household with a disability, or be 65-years-old or older.
Other general requirements include:
For last year, elderly Medicaid applicants must have limited resources and a limited monthly income. For an individual, the monthly income cannot exceed $2,199/month, $4,398/month for a couple. There is an asset limit of $2,000 for an individual and $3,000 for a couple. Some programs have extended those limits to $5,000/individual, and $6,000/couple and a person’s home and their vehicle do not count in the calculation of assets.
The waiver programs that will help pay for Assisted Living Services in Texas include:
Financially, Texas is a low-cost state, both to live in and to retire. On a 100-point scale, Texas comes in overall at 90.40, with Groceries at 89.6, Health at 97, Housing at 82, Utilities at 96, Transportation at 97 and Miscellaneous items at 95 – all below national the average.
Here are some things to consider when choosing if Texas should be your retirement destination:
Due to Texas’ large size, there are varying climates throughout the state. There are distinctly different climates in the various regions of Texas – the Northern Plains; the Trans-Pecos Region; the Hill Country; the Piney Woods; and South Texas. The Northern Plains is a semi-arid climate that is prone to drought, yet the Panhandle, which is in the Northern Plains is known for its cold winters and snow is not uncommon during the winter months. The Trans-Pecos Region often referred to as “Big Bend” country, is in the Western and west-central part of the state and includes the Chihuahuan Desert and mountain ranges. This area is the driest area in Texas and snowfall is rare except in the higher elevations of the mountains.
Central Texas is known as the Hill Country due to its hills and many rivers. Winters in Central Texas are cool and summers are extremely warm. This area has a lot of precipitation during a year and flooding is common. The Piney Woods is the Eastern part of the state and is a humid subtropical climate. This area gets more rain than any other part of Texas and is prone to severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. South Texas includes the semiarid ranch area as well as the Rio Grande Valley. Summers are hot and humid while winters can be cold, yet it is rare to have snow in this part of Texas.
Severe weather can occur in Texas in any of the seasons, which makes it one of the more unpredictable states for senior living. Thunderstorms occur frequently in the northern and eastern part of the state and Texas is in what is called “Tornado Alley” and has more tornadoes than any other state in the nation annually, with an average of 139 per year. Tornadoes happen most frequently in North Texas in May, June, and April. Texas is also susceptible to hurricanes and the state has been hit by some of the worst hurricanes in American history. The most dangerous part of the Hurricane in Texas is the flooding that occurs when the hurricane or tropical storm stalls over the state and rains heavily.
The temperatures in the summer months can get extraordinarily hot and unbearable for senior citizens – 120° F is the record high in August, and often the high temperature is over 100° F for more than 50 days in a row. The hot weather could make it difficult for a senior living in Texas to tolerate the weather. The summer transition into Fall occurs late in the year, October usually if not later and it is quite normal to have temperatures in the 60s during December. While the weather in the winter is mild compared to other states, parts of Texas often see icy conditions that make driving hazardous and the state is known to shut schools and government offices if there is even the hint of winter weather conditions.
Texas is the second most populous state in America (behind California) with a population of over 25 million as well as the second largest state, 268,581 square miles, (behind Alaska) with almost 28 million residents. It ranks quite low on the percentage of seniors in the state, 48th, with just 11.49% of the population being 65 or older - although that will surely change in the future. The population density of Texas is 103.7 people per square miles (26th in the nation.), although that number is a bit skewed as Texas is so large that six of the top 20 most populated U.S. cities are in Texas: #4 – Houston, TX – 2.24 million; #7 – San Antonio, TX – 1.44 million; #9 Dallas, TX – 1.28 million; #16 Ft. Worth, TX – 812,000; and #19 – El Paso,TX – 670,000.
With 254 counties in Texas, there is a huge difference in population of the counties with various senior population in each. Many of the counties that are east of Interstate 35 are considered urban, while many, though not all, that are west of the Interstate are more rural. For example, Harris Country, where Houston is located, has a population of over four million people and is 1,777 square miles. On the opposite end of the spectrum is Loving County, with a population of around 100 and only one town in the entire country, Mentone. Its area is a mere 677 square miles and students must be bused to another county for school.
English is the primary language in Texas, followed by Spanish, Vietnamese, Chinese, and German. Of those five and older almost 70% spoke only English at home, approximately 29% spoke Spanish, 0.75% Vietnamese, and about 0.5% spoke Chinese. Cherokee is the most widely spoken Native American language spoken in Texas. On average, about 34% of the population of Texas aged five and older spoke a language other than English at home.
The racial composition of Texas is 70.5% White American (45.3% being non-Hispanic whites); almost 12% Black or African-American; almost 4% Asian; and 0.7% American Indian. 37.6% of the population are Hispanic or Latino. In 2011, almost 70% of those younger than one had at least one parent who was a minority.
Regarding religion, 77% of the population are Christians (of any denomination), 18% are unaffiliated, and 4% are of Non-Christian faiths. In terms of adherents, The Roman Catholic Church has approximately 4.6 million, the Southern Baptist Convention 3.7 million, the United Methodist Church 1.04 million, and Islam almost 500,000. Texas is often called the “buckle of the Bible Belt” with East Texas considered socially conservative, the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex home to three evangelical seminaries as well as some of the “mega-churches” that are often on TV. There is a large Muslim population in Richardson, Texas (a suburb of Dallas) and Texas is the 5th largest Muslim-populated state in the U.S.
Texas is one of seven states that have no taxes on any income, which can help seniors tremendously. It does have a 6.25% sales tax with cities and counties permitted to add additional taxes, although the maximum allowable is 8.25%. There is no estate tax in the state of Texas.
Texas property taxes are among the highest in the nation, with rates averaging 1.94%. However, your property tax burden will depend on where you live. For example, Dallas County’s average effective rate is 2.19% whereas Houston, in Harris County, has an average effective property tax of 2.3%. (There is a difference between the “taxable value” and “effective value.” Most areas use the property’s taxable value, which is usually based on market value.)
There are exemptions for certain situations, including:
Texas is also considered to be a tax friendly state for seniors, due to the following:
There are many large cities in Texas to consider when looking for a destination for retiring, but these are some of the smaller cities that have been highly rated for Texas senior living .
SeniorGuidance.org provides comprehensive resources on various senior living options, including: assisted living facilities, senior living communities, nursing homes, independent living communities, continuing care retirement communities (CCRC) and all other long term senior care options, including memory care such as Alzheimer's or Dementia.
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