Sat. Dec 2nd, 2023

San Diego offers a scenic coastal location, and its lower crime rates make it an attractive place for seniors. The city also has high property and sales taxes, so seniors need to budget carefully.

Luckily, some private insurance and government-sponsored programs can help with the cost of assisted living. This article will detail some of these options, including their precise eligibility requirements for assisted living care like Lantern Crest.


San Diego is a beautiful city on a fantastic stretch of California coastline. The coastal location attracts tourists, keeping the area thriving with activity. The city also has low crime rates, making it safe for seniors to explore local businesses and run errands.

Most residents of assisted living pay out-of-pocket or through long-term care insurance. However, Medicare does not cover any senior living or long-term care costs.

According to Genworth’s Cost of Care Survey, seniors in San Diego typically pay $5,475 a month for a spot at one of the area’s 112 assisted living facilities. This is slightly higher than the state average of $5,250. Many seniors choose a community that offers a continuum of care so they don’t have to move as their needs shift.


While all assisted living communities aim to provide seniors with a safe and dignified environment, each goes about it differently. Differences typically manifest through a facility’s menu of a la carte services and varying apartment sizes.

A critical factor in selecting an assisted living community is its proximity to world-class healthcare providers. For example, San Diego’s Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla has several nationally ranked specialty programs, making it easy for residents to access the care they need.

In addition, the cost of an assisted living community can be partially covered by Medicaid or Medicare, depending on your loved one’s situation. A certified senior advisor can help you navigate the system to determine eligibility and find a community right for your loved one.


The state regulates assisted living communities through Community Care Licensing, ensuring facilities follow a Code of Regulations. These regulations cover staffing, health and safety, and medication administration.

The Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) is a home and community-based services waiver program that helps seniors afford the cost of living in an assisted care facility. To qualify, applicants must meet income and asset requirements. These requirements include income proof, medical and Social Security card copies, bank statements, and life insurance policies.

Residents must pass a background check before moving into a senior care facility. Some communities offer additional on-site perks for an extra fee, such as beauty salon services or massage sessions. These perks can help seniors feel more comfortable in their new surroundings.


The state of California provides resources to help seniors afford assisted living. These include state supplemental payments (SSP) and the Assisted Living Waiver program. To qualify for these programs, individuals must meet specific criteria. These criteria include income and asset limits. Applicants must be California residents and U.S. citizens, nationals, or legal aliens.

The Assisted Living Waiver is an experimental Medi-Cal waiver that allows seniors to choose an assisted living facility rather than a nursing home. The program is available in 15 counties, including San Diego.

To apply for the waiver, seniors must complete an application and submit the required documentation. Insufficient or missing documentation can delay the process. A professional Medicaid planner can help applicants compile the necessary documents and avoid these delays.


California requires that assisted living communities follow the rules and regulations. Seniors can find resources for caregiving and support through the San Diego Aging and Independence Services program and the 211 phone line.

The 211 system has information in multiple languages and can connect seniors with local agencies that offer free and low-cost services. It can also assist with finding home care assistance.

AARP offers programs for seniors and caregivers, including free classes, support groups, and webinars. It also provides various tools and information, such as a caregiver’s guide, fact sheets, and a database of services. It can also refer families to a professional who can help them navigate the caregiving process. This nonprofit organization promotes a holistic approach to caregiving that emphasizes older adults’ dignity, power, and worth.

By senior