Independent Living vs. Assisted Living: What You Should Know

Every aging individual has a unique need. Choosing the right one from the list of assisted living facilities South Milwaukee WI is easy if you understand all the available options.

Elder care exists on a spectrum including independent living and assisted living. Independent living is a type of senior housing designed for those who enjoy a communal setting and want to interact more often, but without the stress of home maintenance or chores.

Assisted living, on the other hand, offers similar services as the former. However, the stark difference is that assisted living provides more comprehensive care for seniors who want to enjoy daily living to the fullest.

Take a closer look at the difference between independent living and assisted living facilities.


Independent living offers accommodation with full amenities including kitchens, while the apartments in assisted living facilities come equipped with limited amenities, and increased safety features.

Independent Living

You can choose an apartment-style that best suit your needs. As the term implies, residents live independently but they have access to common areas for social gatherings. Since independent living facilities are designed for seniors who need little or no help to perform daily activities. However, the features and amenities in these apartments can be likened to those in a typical home.

Assisted Living

Accommodations in an assisted living setting are in apartment-style. Apartment options include studios, one-bedroom units, and apartments with multiple bedrooms. To reduce safety risks, assisted living facilities have limited appliances. Rooms are also installed with security features like emergency call buttons and grab bars. Surveillance systems run every hour of the day.

Care and Services

One of the major differences between these two facilities is the care and support services rendered.

Independent Living

Independent living is designed to make daily living more enjoyable for residents. They aim to make residents live independently for as long as possible. Service offerings include landscaping, laundry and housekeeping services, security surveillance, and on-site dining facilities. However, they do not have a full-time staff member who offers custodial care and medical care.

Assisted Living

Just as the name implies, this facility is designed to provide assisted daily living services to aging adults. These services include dressing, bathing, laundry, and medical attention.

At least one medical professional makes up the staff members in these facilities. Residents get the care and the most needed attention 24 hours a day.


Independent living and assisted living communities have specific features in common. These include the flowing

  • Both communities offer social and recreational opportunities specifically designed to meet the unique needs of residents.
  • Transportation services for conveying residents to and from doctor’s appointments and more importantly for running errands
  • Activities: Residents can have the fun of their life by taking part in a wide range of fun-filled activities including field trips, game nights, happy hours, exercise classes, support and discussion groups, and lots more.

With these few tips, you can decide which of the two facilities is best suited for your aging adults.