If you're choosing a retirement community, there are a few things to consider to get the most out of your care. First decide which type of facility you need. Assisted living communities offer apartments or suites and provide assistance with daily tasks. Independent communities provide an environment for seniors who can manage daily living on their own. Nursing homes provide more comprehensive medical care. When you visit a home, look at the physical appearance. Does it seem safe and clean? Do the residents look involved and interested? How are the rooms assigned? What kind of food is served and how often? Is there medical care or therapy available? Ask to see the activities schedule. How have they fared in state inspections? You'll probably also want to discuss waiting lists and financial arrangements. It's a good idea to find one located close to family members, so they can visit easily.