What is a Continuing Care Retirement Community?

A Continuing Care Retirement Community, or CCRC, provides a continuum of care to older adults in one location. Services offered in the continuum of care include, but are not limited to, independent living, assisted living, and skilled nursing. Most CCRC’s are generally a collection of homes, apartments, or townhomes that include common areas such as a library, activity rooms, a restaurant-style dining room etc. Other amenities familiar to CCRC’s may include a swimming pool, exercise facility, on-site bank, beauty salon, convenience store & guest accommodations.

Typically, CCRC’s require an entrance fee to enter the community. This entrance fee entitles the resident the freedom to move through the levels of care, as needed, and it provides them with bed availability in skilled nursing when needed. Entrance fees can range from a few thousand dollars to nearly $800,000. However, the typical entrance fee will range from $50,000-200,000. There are four common entrance fee plans offered by North Carolina CCRC’s. Each community has the option of choosing which plans they will offer to their residents.

All CCRC’s require the resident to sign a contract. These contracts provide lodging, medical services, and other health-related services, along with nursing care to someone for the remainder of their life or for a period longer than a year. There are 4 types of contracts that most NC CCRC’s will fall under.

  • Extensive– provides housing, residential services, and health-related services for a set price. These prices usually include an entrance fee and a monthly fee. No additional fees are generally required as one moves through the different levels of care.
  • Modified– provides housing, residential services and a specific amount of health-related services in exchange for an entrance fee and a monthly fee. Health-related services are provided at a subsidized rate or are provided free for a specific number of days. (Windsor Point is a modified fee community.)
  • Fee for service– provides housing, residential services and guaranteed access to health-related services in exchange for an entrance fee and a monthly fee. Health-related services are provided at the going, full per diem rate.
  • Equity– involves an actual real estate purchase, with the transfer of ownership to the unit. Health-related service arrangements vary.

*Above Information obtained from the North Carolina Department of Insurance