Peninsula Small Business Talk

from the Peninsula Executives Association


Super Senior Solutions with Kaye Sharbrough, Senior Seasons

Kaye Sharbrough’s business is called Senior Seasons and what they do is interview seniors and/or their families and match their preferences to senior housing.  The interview may be in person or over the telephone and could involve family members or a representative of the senior such an estate planner or fiduciary.  At the interview stage, Kaye establishes the clients’ care needs, geographical preferences, the type of living environment they prefer (cozy and snug?  light and airy? Etc.), type of activities that they like, and so on.  Having created a profile of the type of housing the client wants, Kaye matches the profile to facilities in a senior housing database that they have created.  Senior Seasons prepares a preliminary report that they review and discuss with the clients.

After this stage, Kaye gets the list down to a final report containing a short list of two to five choices that she suggests for a closer look.  She finds that most seniors are really not up for visiting more than five facilities and many seniors need a shorter list than that.  The clients may visit the facility on their own, with their family, or with Kaye.    She does recommend that the visit take place with Kaye there to assist.

Kaye illustrated the process of matching an individual client to the right senior housing through the stories of some of her clients.  The first client was Sue*.  Sue lived alone in Belmont in a condo that had stairs.  Sue was no longer driving and her children in Mountain View and Los Altos wanted to see her more often and more easily.  The solution for Sue was an independent apartment in Mountain View with services and transportation.  Independent living facilities have individual apartments that are either shared or private and vary in size.  They can include meals, activities, housekeeping, laundry, transportation, entertainment and emergency response.  To live at this type of facility, the client must be independent upon move in.  The month-to-month rental for this type of apartment ranges from $2,500 to $6,000.  Sue chose Redwood Villa in Mountain View.

Next, Kaye described a couple named Daniel* and Sarah*.  Sarah is wheelchair-bound from a skiing accident in the 1980’s.  Daniel was her caregiver and husband and was tired.  In addition to caring for her, he took care of the house and did the shopping and cooking.  They had in-home care but needed more.  For them, Kaye recommended an independent, assisted and memory facility like Woodside Terrace, Palo Alto Commons, or Atria Sunnyvale.  This type of facility has individual apartments and includes meals, activities, housekeeping, laundry, transportation, entertainment and emergency response.  Month-to-month rentals run from $2,900 to $6,000 (for residents with dementia the cost is $4,600 to $10,000 per month).

Finally, there was Cindy*.  Cindy was 92 years old, legally blind and living alone in Stockton when she began working with Kaye.  Her cousin, who was 85, lives in Los Altos and is involved in visiting and helping her get Veterans Benefits.  For Cindy, a residential care home has worked out perfectly.  Also called Board and Care, this is usually a single family home licensed for 4 to 20 residents.  Care givers are there 24 hours and provide all supportive services.  They can usually accept very frail folks and those with dementia.  Monthly fees run from $2,500 to $6,000.

Call Kaye Sharbrough and Senior Seasons if you need help finding senior housing.

*Names have been changed for privacy reasons.


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