Assisted Living Homes in Wisconsin

According to Wisconsin law, an assisted living home or personal care facility is referred to as a community-based residential community. A community-based residential home is further defined as a residential building, which provides supportive services, personal care services, shelter and supervision in an independent environment to a residential population of 5 or more adults unrelated to the administration who do not require medical or hospital services for more than 3 hours per week.

There are approximately 1,980 community-based residential resting homes operating in Wisconsin.


Find Senior Caring Options by County

Assisted Living Communities in Wisconsin – Cost Comparison

City Monthly Minimum Monthly Maximum Monthly Median
Appleton $3,050 $4,689 $3,268
Green Bay $2,600 $4,628 $3,125
Madison $2,500 $7,050 $4,000
Milwaukee $2,450 $7,000 $4,128
Oshkosh $2,250 $5,025 $3,630
Wausau $2,725 $4,825 $3,550

The average cost of assisted living in Wisconsin is $3,980 per month. Compared to the national average cost for long-term senior care, Wisconsin’s average state cost falls in the above average category. Within the state, average senior care costs vary depending on location and population size of the city as well as the amount of personal care needed. However, all area averages fall within the $3,500 - $4,000 price range.

For more information about assisted living costs in Wisconsin, check out Genworth’s 2015 Cost of Care Survey.

Recreation & Attractions in Wisconsin

Nestled on the northern border of the United States, Wisconsin diverse and scenic terrain combining the ruggedness of the wilderness and the leisure of the beach. Encompassing a whole county, one of Wisconsin’s most attractive destinations is Door County. Comprised of 300 miles of shorelines and 5 state parks, Door County offers a wide array of activities from walking trails and fruit picking to relaxation on the shore and exploring Door County’s 11 lighthouses. Visitors are welcome to stay on designated camping sites or one of the historical bed and breakfasts. For the nature lovers, Olbrich Botanical Gardens spans 16 acres of land featuring a myriad of fauna and flora from exotic and local areas.

Wisconsin’s Climate, Geography, & Culture

Known as America’s Dairyland, Wisconsin is a state deeply rooted in agriculture. State residents are warm, welcoming, and down to earth. People here enjoy outdoor activities and prefer to consume local products to support their economy.

Like most of the United States, Wisconsin primarily experiences a humid continental climate with influences from the neighboring Lake Michigan and Superior. Lake Michigan and Superior moderately affect Wisconsin with pronounced amounts of rain during the spring and summer and snow during the winter. Winter daytime temperatures average 10-20 degrees, but it is fairly common to see days with temperatures below 0 degrees. Wisconsin accumulates an average of 30 to 40 inches of snow. The higher mountainous elevations tend to receive more amounts of snow annually. During the summer months, daytime averages climb into the mid-70 to mid-80-degree range.

Wisconsin’s Assisted Living Centers Regulations & Laws

Assisted Living Homes are regulated by a state-to-state basis. Every state has a publicly accessible legal document outlining the regulations, licensing, operation and other rules for assisted living. The complete official document outlining the regulations for Wisconsin assisted senior living homes can be obtained online via the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website. These regulations will also document any differences between the terms "assisted living" and "personal care." Public records concerning inspections, citations, violations and the like pertaining to individual homes can be obtained online.

Crime & Safety in Wisconsin

Lower than the national average crime rates, Wisconsin makes for a safe and secure environment to age in. Not sure where to start your search in the state? Check out some of these safest communities:

LocationViolent Crimes Per 1,000 ResidentsProperty Crimes Per 1,000 Residents
Oconomowoc Town0.002.54
Mukwonago Town0.743.09
North Hudson0.004.21


Payment Options for Wisconsin Assisted Living Homes

IRIS (Include, Respect, I Self-Direct) Program

For those seeking financial assistance, Wisconsin’s Medicaid offers the IRIS Program to elderly and disabled residents. This program is designed to offer a wide range of services to prevent participants from prematurely entering nursing home care. These services are based on an analysis of individual needs for long-term care and are distributed to the participant in a personal home or in an alternate care home. Money to cover services costs is allocated to the participant based on the outcomes decided via the analysis of supportive needs. For more information and eligibility guidelines, please visit the official IRIS Program page via the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website.

Exceptional Expense Supplement for Members of Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

For those who are not Medicaid qualified or are searching for an alternate payment option, Wisconsin offers a state program called the Supplemental Security Income Exceptional Expense Supplement program to low-income senior residents. This program is designed to directly allocate a subsidy of $180 to the participant per month to help cover costs of supportive and personal care services. Supportive and personal care services are distributed through this program to participants residing in personal homes or in an alternate senior care unit such as an assisted living community. To be eligible for this program, one must be assessed by the state and found qualified to receive 40 hours or more of care a week. Although, one does not necessarily need to be receiving 40 hours of care per week to be assessed as needing 40 hours of care per week. To find more information and the eligibility guidelines for this program, please visit the official Supplemental Security Income Exceptional Expense Supplement program page via the Wisconsin Department of Health Services website.

Assisted Living Family Loans

Alternate payment options are available. Families can apply for an assisted living family loan. This provides temporary or long-term financial assistance when paying for assisted senior care. The program allows multiple people to contribute to payment.

Senior & Elderly Rights for Personal Care Residences in Wisconsin

While residing in the home, a resident retains constitutional civil rights, rights of privacy, freedom of speech, and freedom of religion. The resident also retains the right to personal possessions, autonomy over personal finances, bodily autonomy, and power of attorney. The resident has a right to be informed of the process to file a complaint of unsatisfactory living situations, abuse, neglect and the like. The complete list of resident rights as guaranteed by the state of Wisconsin can be obtained online.

Wisconsin Assisted Living Homes: Medical Record Rules & Regulations

Wisconsin personal care communities are required to provide appropriate health services that are ordered by an attending physician, as well as keep all medical information confidential, accurate, and complete. Medical records must include a recent photograph of the resident, and shall be kept for a no shorter than 5 years from death or discharge date.

Residents in Wisconsin assisted living homes have access to their medical records and can request a copy of all or a portion of their medical records. They can also request a copy of some or all of the information, and it is to be provided at a cost not to exceed the community standard for photocopies.

Finding the perfect senior care community is only part of making your loved one’s senior living transition smooth. At SeniorCaring, we know that it is also equally important to be aware of what other community services and resources are available to your family’s senior. Choose your location and find local resources for your senior.