Find Continuing Care In Iowa

Continuing care retirement communities are communities with accommodations for independent living, assisted living, and nursing home care, offering residents a continuum of care. The communities ensure a dignified place for you or your senior to stay. Although there is no overarching federal agency that regulates retirement communities, the private non-profit organization CARF-CCAC provides a voluntary process for individual CCRCs to become accredited.


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Recreation and Attractions In Iowa

Popular for its rolling plains and cornfields, Iowa is also known for attractions such as the Des Moines Art Center, Pappajohn Sculpture Park, and the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art. Other great day trips include a cruise on a traditional riverboat along the Upper Mississippi or a visit to one of Iowa’s refined botanical gardens. With plenty of activities available through your CCRC alone, there is bound to be something new to explore every day!

Iowa's Climate, Geography, and Culture

The average temperature is 51 degrees, with an average low temperature of 41 degrees, and an average high temperature of 61 degrees. The summers are hot and humid with temperatures in the 80s and spring and fall temperatures are between the 40s and 70s. Many enjoy Iowa for its mild temperature and weather. Harsh winters and brutal summers are rare in the midwest state, so it's a perfect place to settle down. 

Crime and Safety In Iowa

When searching for a long-term care option or retirement community it is important to explore the surrounding area to ensure your move is to a safe location. Iowa’s rates of violent and property crimes are lower than the national average, so it is likely that you’ll find a suitable place to call home for many years to come. Below are some of the safest cities in Iowa:

LocationViolent Crimes Per 1,000 ResidentsProperty Crimes Per 1,000 Crimes
Grundy Center.363.31


Payment and Costs for CCRCs in Iowa

The payment plans will differ at each CCRC, however, large entrance fees are to be expected and can range anywhere from $30,000 to $500,000 and even up to $1 million at a single time depending on your contract and location. The national average cost of an entrance fee based on the most recent data is $248,000, and this price is expected to continue to fluctuate based on local housing prices.

The type of contract entered into by the resident will include a monthly maintenance fee costing between $300 and $4,500 or more depending on which services are utilized. Some residents may choose a buy-in option, meaning they join the community through buying an actual property. Whether you buy a property or not, it’s still necessary to look out for any additional maintenance or service fees before signing a contract.

The difference in prices is largely a result of the type of contract residents enter into, as well as their individual health care costs and possible Medicare or Medicaid coverage. 

  1. Extensive Contracts – Guarantee a lifetime of housing and care at any and all levels provided by the community. These include monthly fees in exchange for a wide range of services. Because there is a relatively lower degree of risk, the upfront costs are much higher.
    1. Entry Fee: $160,000 - $600,000
    2. Monthly Fee: $2,500 - $5,400
  2. Modified Contracts – Modified contracts only extend to a set number of days. After exceeding this limit, services are paid for out of pocket by the resident. Monthly fees are also still charged at an ongoing rate.
    1. Entry Fee: $80,000 - $750,000
    2. Monthly Fee: $1,500 - $2,500
  3. Fee-For-Service Contracts – Residents only pay for the services they currently use, however, are not safeguarded from any future changes in pricing or service availability. Most of the financial burden is borne by the resident, depending on Medicare or Medicaid eligibility. These are considered to be the contracts with the highest risk, even though their upfront costs are the lowest.
    1. Entry Fee: $100,000 - $500,000
    2. Monthly Fee: $1,300 - $4,300
  4. Rental Agreements – Allow residents the ability to rent a housing unit on a monthly or annual basis. This type of contract does not guarantee access to health care on a fee-for-service basis, unlike other agreements.
    1. Entry Fee: $1,800 - $30,000
    2. Monthly Fee: $900 - $10,700
  5. Equity Agreements – Shares of the community or association are afforded to individuals by the transferal of actual home, condominium, or townhome ownership within the CCRC. Healthcare services can still be purchased for additional fees. Through an equity agreement, the property’s appreciation benefits the individual or their estate as specified by the terms of the contract. This type of agreement relies heavily on the fluctuations of real estate in the area. 

From a Report by The U.S. Government Accountability Office.

Senior and Elderly Rights for Continued Care in Iowa

Your rights as a US citizen are not taken away just because you are entering a CCRC. State and federal laws guarantee that your freedoms, privacy, and ability to act autonomously are preserved while receiving care at the community's various levels. You still have the right to manage your personal and financial affairs and air grievances. Additionally, all services provided and a description of your rights within each particular CCRC are to be explained and understood upon entering into your continuing care contract. If you ever feel like these rights have been violated, don’t hesitate to contact a legal advisor familiar with senior law. Coupled with Iowa’s diverse attractions and unique cities, your move to a CCRC can be the perfect chance to retire comfortably.

Iowa Personal Care: Medical Record Rules and Regulations

Most communities will require a health screening in order for individuals to be admitted. Many times an applicant’s health records are required as well as a physical examination given by a physician selected by the particular CCRC. Unfortunately, it is common for applicants with frailties and those older than 80 years of age to be too frail. In these cases, the applicant might not be accepted. Residents receiving any type of medical attention in Iowa are entitled to a comprehensive and accurate record of their diagnosis and treatment. State and federal laws provide that residents have access to their records and health information, as well as the right to know when disclosures have been made. Otherwise, these records are to remain confidential for up to 7 years and can be accessed by submitting a request and providing a small fee.

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.