Posh retirement facilities

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Have you thought about spending your golden years in luxurious surroundings?

I'm Barbara Whelehan with the Personal Finance Minute.

Some senior living communities offer luxurious amenities such as a state-of-the-art pool, a professionally designed golf course and well-appointed dining facilities where you can enjoy savory meals prepared by specially trained chefs. But these places are not cheap. For example, a facility in California charges a seven-figure entry fee, plus a monthly fee of nearly $5,000 a month. It's designed for the well-heeled retiree who wants to age in place. Some offer a continuum of care, with independent living units, assisted living apartments, memory support suites, and skilled nursing rooms for those requiring 24-hour care.

But some are run as non-profits, where the bulk of the entry fee -- as much as 80 percent -- is returned to the resident when he or she leaves or to the resident's estate. But you have to do your homework and make sure the operation is financially sound before moving in.

For more on assisted living and other personal finance information, visit I'm Barbara Whelehan.


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