02 Feb A Fireside Chat on RAL Home Business Decisions (Part I)
Are prospective residents and families allowed to visit multiple times before final decision is made?
You want the families to do their due diligence. – Tweet this!
You want them to feel comfortable and to have all their questions answered, and it gives you an opportunity to feel them out and get an idea as to how do they interact; if it’s the correct fit. This is a very important part of being a good facility manager.
Every time somebody express interest to be with you, you have an intake session where they sit down with the field manager so the field manager will get to know the needs of the family of that person because everybody is an individual. They have certain habits. They have specific needs right down to food considerations, or medicines, or the type of doctor’s visits that they would need, or the type of family support that they may or may not have.
You certainly want the family involved. You don’t want a family to be basically dropping somebody off and not being engaged. It’s a real partnership.
Do I need a waiting list policy?
No, you don’t need a waiting list; in this business, generally you don’t have a waiting list. The reason is because when somebody needs housing for an elderly person they need it now. They generally aren’t anticipating making a move sometime in the future. Your goal is to keep your place full with appropriate residents that are properly qualified for your facility. If somebody comes to the door saying, “We need a bed for somebody, this weekend.” If they “fit the bill” you want to move them in. You don’t want to hold a room, or you don’t expect that somebody, six months from now, might say, “Well now, I need the room.”
Are prospect residents and families allowed check the licensing? Do I need an attorney to review each contract before signing?
Yes, as far as the first question is concerned. The licenses need to be posted right on the wall close to the entryway, plus the home is listed at the state level. Point them out to the family or show it to them.
Next question: I’m not a legal adviser, however that’s not a good idea. You don’t need to have an attorney review each contract.
Once you have your residency agreement in place, you really need to know that line by line and be very clear on it. If you need to read it ten times to understand what it says so you can explain it to somebody else, absolutely. You need to know it in and out but you don’t need to have an attorney review the document before signing that specific document.
Do I need to have “move-in incentives”?
You don’t need to.
There may be times when you do specific incentives to get people to move in. – Tweet this!
For example: “We’d love mom to stay here. We’ve looked at three other places and yours is the choice, but between mom’s social security, her pension, and the money that we can put in as a family we can only come up with $4,000. Would that be a consideration?” In that case, and let’s assume that you had a room available and to get somebody in there versus having an empty bed, you might say, “We will be happy to do that. We’ll do that for a period of four months, or a period of six months.”
Should I allow negotiations on the monthly price?
The answer, in our opinion, is no. The price is not negotiable. People will make things happen for something they want. If you’re providing good value, and if you do have a desirable premium home, and people want to move there, your place is going to fill up and you’re not going to need to negotiate on prices.
Do I offer “a la carte” menu of services and “full” services menu?
Some larger, big box facilities do have a la carte, per se. In a residential assisted living facility, residential system living care home, you don’t have a menu of services. You’re going to be, obviously, taking care of people, the cleaning, any other needs that they have (bathing, etc.). You’re going to be serving them food. If they need other type of services, for example a hair stylist once a month, that would be something that they could pay for individually. Let’s say that somebody wants some other type of medical service, that’s something the family would arrange for and coordinate with you, but they would have to take care of separately.
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Founder of the Residential Assisted Living Academy.
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