What is independent living?

Independent living is a great option if you’re an older couple or individual who would like to be part of an established community, but still retain all the freedoms of living in your own home.

This article explains the key benefits of independent living in more detail and answers some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding independent living in the UK today.

What is independent living?

Independent living offers you the chance to live in your own private home, but within a dedicated community where you have access to leisure facilities, a social network, and on-site care should you need it.

It’s a great option if you don’t require round-the-clock care or support, but value having everything you need to lead an active and fulfilling life immediately on your doorstep, without having to travel.

In an independent living community your home will have its own kitchen, bathroom, living room(s) and bedroom(s), just the same as you’re used to. The main difference is that you’ll be living exclusively among people who are of a similar age to yourself, and you’ll have access to on-site services and other support whenever you need it.

Independent living versus assisted living

While independent living offers you all the freedoms you’re used to, assisted living is ideal for anyone who relies on help day-to-day.

To make the distinction clearer, we’ve outlined the key differences between independent and assisted living:

Independent living

Our independent living means being able to go about your day-to-day life without leaning on others. You’ll be able to wash and dress yourself and prepare your own meals. Although we do provide your lunch in our dining room as an optional standard. We also provide help for the daily tasks of homeownership such as housekeeping, external and grounds maintenance, window cleaning, a handyman service for small tasks, maintenance and servicing of white goods in your property, smoke alarm fitting and servicing, alongside many inclusive bills such as central heating, buildings insurance and sewerage.

You’ll still have access to round-the-clock support, either through the emergency Aid Call system or the daily warden service and, with notice, the nursing home. However, you’ll be able to complete basic tasks without intervention and are free to come and go as you please, living life pretty much as you’ve always been used to. However, should you need a little help at any time, you have the comfort of knowing it’s always readily available to you.

Assisted living

Assisted living still gives you the freedom of living in your own home, but with all the support you need to live comfortably and fulfil essential everyday tasks. You may have someone who comes in each day to help you clean and cook, get in and out of bed, bathe yourself, and get dressed.

With assisted living you still have a degree of independence and access to an on-site community where you can participate in social activities, but you also have the assurance of round-the-clock care support to help you with the things you can no longer manage alone.

Independent living benefits and amenities

Choosing to join an independent living community offers a wealth of benefits alongside the freedom to keep living your life however you please. Below are just some of the things to value about independent living.

An established community of people your own age

If you’re feeling isolated or lonely, independent living is a great way to make new friends and connect with others your own age. You’ll be joining an established community of residents at the exact same stage of life as you - perfect if you want to expand your social network or enjoy the peace of mind of living in a secure, purpose built community.

Help and support when you need it

One of the key benefits of independent living is access to on-site care and support, such as gardening, laundry and maintenance services. You’ll be free to continue living on your own terms, but with the assurance that there’s always help available should you need it. In fact, you’ll enjoy access to a wide range of complimentary services included within your service charge.

An entire world on your doorstep

As well as the opportunity to enjoy wonderful lunches in our dedicated dining room, inclusive of your service charge, independent living with Amesbury offers an on-site hairdressing salon, acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, and community spaces where you can socialise with fellow residents or visiting friends and family. There’s even guest accommodation within the grounds, should you need extra space for overnight visitors.

An annual calendar of activities and events

Joining an independent living community gives you the option to take part in social events and activities both on site and off. At Amesbury, all residents enjoy exclusive fishing rights on the Hampshire Avon. We also organise theatre visits and days out to galleries and local gardens, as well as on site social activities such as themed lunches, bridge, art classes and yoga.

Financial peace of mind

Together with the security of your own private home, independent living offers support such as groundskeeping, maintenance, and even including your water and heating costs in your Accommodation Charge. Not only does this free up equity from your previous home to allow you to live more comfortably, it also gives you the reassurance of knowing precisely what your outgoings will total each quarter and what you can expect to receive when the time comes to leave your property.

Independent living FAQs

Frequently asked questions about independent living.

What is independent living?

Independent living is when you live in your own home, but within a dedicated seniors community that features on-site services and support, should you need it.

Who is independent living for?

Independent living is for over 55s who want the freedom of living in their own home, but as part of a purpose-built community that offers on-site facilities and access to essential services.

Is independent living only for individuals?

No, independent living caters to senior couples as well as individuals.

Is there a minimum age for independent living?

Yes, you must be at least 55 to qualify for independent living.

Are there any annual fees?

Residents pay a quarterly Accommodation Charge which includes a wide range of facilities and benefits, such as on-site dining, handyman services, and some bills. In addition residents will need to pay council tax, electricity, phone bills and contents insurance. Buildings insurance is covered in the quarterly charges.