Nicknamed “the Prairie State,” Illinois is home to Chicago, one of the largest cities in the U.S. but is also known for farmland, forests, rolling hills and wetlands. Some say these factors help make it a microcosm of the entire country. Retiring in Illinois means experiencing big city culture and small town hospitality. Illinois claims the world’s first skyscraper, Abraham Lincoln’s home, and the Ice Cream Sundae. Scenic attractions including Carlyle lake, the Mississippi River, Garden of the Gods, Shawnee National Forest, and Peoria’s Grandview Drive “World’s Most Beautiful Drive”. Popular Chicago landmarks include Navy Pier,The Field Museum, stunning architecture, and Shedd Aquarium.

Retiring in Illinois offers seniors distinct seasons, as Illinois has a temperate climate, with cold, snowy winters and hot, wet summers. The seasons are sharply differentiated: mean winter temperatures are 22°F (–6°C) in the north and 37°F (3°C) in the south; mean summer temperatures are 70°F (21°C) in the north and 77°F (25°C) in the south.

Retiring In Illinois and Taxes

The Illinois (IL) state sales tax rate is currently 6.25%. Depending on local municipalities, the total tax rate can be as high as 9.75%. Illinois levies a flat income tax of 3.75 percent of net income, however all retirement income is exempt: Illinois does not tax distributions from defined-benefit pension plans, 401(k) accounts, IRAs, self-employed retirement savings, government employee pensions, military pensions, railroad retirement benefits, lump-sum distributions of retirement benefits, deferred compensation paid at retirement by a government employer, or the federally taxable portion of Social Security benefits. Illinois also exempts from state tax early distributions taken from an IRA or 401(k) plan.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities in Illinois

There are a variety of housing options for today’s seniors. Choosing the living arrangement that will best suit a retiree and their family can be a complex issue for seniors in Illinois. Planning ahead for the later stages of retirement can help you and your loved ones avoid difficult situations in the future.

CCRCs or Life Plan Communities offers those who are 55 and older the opportunity to remain independent and active while providing onsite options for future healthcare needs.

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Finding CCRCs in Illinois

Illinois CCRCs are the only type of retirement community that offer residents access to a full continuum of care; which usually includes independent living, assisted living and/or skilled nursing care options. CCRCs are sometimes referred to as Full Service Retirement Communities or Life Plan Communities,

Continuing Care Retirement Communities in IL are generally a collection of apartments, cottages, and town homes or independent group living units and include an assisted living facility, a nursing home, common activity areas such as a restaurant-like dining room, library, and activity and craft rooms. Other amenities often include swimming pools, golf courses, a fitness center, convenience stores, walking trails, gardens, banking services, beauty/barber shops, and guest accommodations.

Regulation Of CCRCs In Illinois

The regulation of CCRCs varies drastically from state to state. Currently 38 states have regulations in place but the requirements are inconsistent. The various agencies that regulate CCRCs include state divisions such as insurance, financial services, aging or elder services, or social services..

The Illinois Life Care Facilities Act authorizes the Illinois Department of Public Health to regulate residency agreements, called “Life Care contracts” that require an entrance fee and include personal, nursing, or medical care in addition to the residency arrangement. The contract includes a promise to provide a range of services at a Life Care facility for a period longer than one year (generally for life) in exchange for the payment of an entrance fee or resident deposit, in addition to or in lieu of a regular periodic payment.

The Department regulates Life Care facilities by: Reviewing applications for Life Care permits, issuing permits where appropriate, monitoring facility compliance with the act and code, monitoring facility financial statements, and managing the utilization of debt service reserve funds of facilities in financial distress

Illinois Retirement Housing Options

Entrance requirements for CCRCs in Illinois vary by location but may include some or all of the following:

  • Entry fee to cover the housing unit’s cost and other services and amenities, including contractually provided access to health care. The entry fee may also help keep monthly services fees lower than they might be at a comparable rental community.
  • Assets and savings equal to a multiple of the entry fee. A typical range is between 2-4 times the entry fee, but this can vary.
  • Minimum age requirements as allowed by the Housing for Older Persons Act.
  • Monthly income equal to a multiple of the monthly service fee. The range is usually similar to that required for assets and savings.
  • Medical reviews. Providers will often request medical records, talk with a prospective resident’s primary care physician, or request a health exam. The specific type of contract offered by the community will determine the degree of emphasis placed on this requirement.
  • Medicare and possibly a Medicare supplement policy, or a similar private-pay plan
  • Will, healthcare power of attorney, and durable power of attorney.

CCRC Entry Fees in Illinois

CCRCs and Life Plan Communities in Illinois usually require an entry fee. The entry fee serves three purposes. Primarily, it secures a resident’s contractual and priority access to a continuum of care. Secondly, the money received from entry fees may be used to help pay down, or limit, the amount of debt required for development, expansion, or long-term capital projects, which benefits the residents and keeps the community attractive and competitive in the marketplace. Finally, some portion of the fee may go toward an endowment fund that provides financial assistance to residents facing a hardship or a longer than average stay in the healthcare facility, allowing them to stay in the community.

Retiring in Illinois: Selecting A Life Plan Retirement Community

If you think a CCRC might be a good fit for you or a loved one, you can get detailed information on top-rated CCRCs and Lifecare communities in Illinois by searching My LifeSite’s life plan community directory and proprietary database for helpful profile reports. Find all the information you need and learn what questions to ask as you begin contacting retirement communities directly. Our independent reports provide everything you need to make an informed decision including retirement community pricing, important contract details, healthcare aspects, and more.

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