21 Assisted Living Communities in Nebraska
Brookdale Kearney Northridge
Brookdale Lexington Nebraska
Brighton Gardens of Omaha
Carter Place Assisted Living Community
Richmont Senior Living
Brookdale Wayne Nebraska
Brookdale Seward Heartland Park
Waterford at Miracle Hills
Nebraska was originally known as the Tree Planter's State because Arbor Day was founded there in 1872. However, in 1945, it officially became the Cornhusker State. The nickname was derived from the University of Nebraska — Lincoln athletic teams, and of course, early Nebraska settlers husked corn by hand before husking machinery was invented. The state's official bird is the Western Meadowlark, and its official flower is goldenrod, which seniors can enjoy seeing throughout the state between July and October.
Lincoln is the state capital, but not the most populous city. While Lincoln has a population of 280,364, 12.1 percent of which is aged 65 or older, Omaha's population is 446,970. None of the other cities in Nebraska are as populated as Lincoln and Omaha, however. Bellevue and Grand Island are the third and fourth most-populous cities in the state, with populations of just over 50,000.
What Is Assisted Living?
Assisted living facilities are residential communities designed for seniors who need a bit of assistance but still want to maintain a very independent lifestyle. These facilities typically provide services to help with routine chores such as laundry, housekeeping and meal prep. Seniors residing in assisted living communities also get help with the activities of daily living (ADLs) such as bathing, dressing and personal grooming.
How Much Does Assisted Living Cost in Nebraska?
In Nebraska, the average monthly cost of assisted living is $3,844, according to the 2018 Genworth Cost of Care Survey.
Of course, monthly costs vary depending on the facility chosen and its location. For example, seniors in Lincoln, Nebraska should expect to pay around $5,429 per month for assisted living, while assisted living in Omaha costs an average of $4,285 per month and in Grand Island assisted living costs average $3,240 per month.
Nebraska's senior community makes up about 26.9 percent of the state's population, as of 2018. Over the past decade, the state's senior population has increased at a slow and steady rate, and it's expected to continue to increase at a rate of about 0.05 percent per year until the year 2030.
How Is Assisted Living Regulated in Nebraska?
Assisted living facilities in Nebraska are licensed and regulated by the Nebraska Division of Public Health's Department of Human Services and Department of Licensure and Regulation. It defines assisted living facilities as residential communities that provide daily food, shelter and care to four or more residents. To qualify for an assisted living facility license, the care given to residents must be provided at regular intervals and include a minimum amount of supervision, as well as assistance with ADLs, personal care, health maintenance activities or other supportive services. Some assisted living facilities have licensed RNs on staff to help review and administer medication to residents.
How Is Assisted Living in Nebraska Affected by Laws and Taxes?
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services has regulations established to help ensure seniors residing in assisted living facilities have the assistance needed to maintain a lifestyle that's as independent as possible. However, there are also some tax benefits to residing in an assisted living community.
Residents avoid paying the state's costly property taxes — Nebraska has a property tax rate of 1.83 percent, as of 2018, making it the seventh highest in the United States.
Those who own homes can expect to pay $1,830 in state property taxes per year for every $100,000 in home value. The state does offer a homestead exemption for seniors age 65 and older. Eligible seniors can claim a tax exemption for between 10 percent and 100 percent of the home value, depending on their annual household income and the value of their home.
Overall, Nebraska isn't considered a very tax-friendly state for retirees. Seniors should expect to pay partial income taxes on Social Security income. Withdrawals from retirement accounts and pension payments are fully taxed at the state's marginal income tax rate of 5.01 percent.
The Nebraska state sales tax sits at 5.5 percent, but with local sales tax added to that, seniors should expect to pay an average of 6.89 percent sales tax on any nonfood items they purchase. Nebraska is one of the few states with an inheritance tax, which could affect the way seniors plan for the financial future of their families. Direct relatives, such as siblings, children, parents and grandchildren, have to pay a 1 percent inheritance tax on inheritance amounts over $40,000. More distant relatives pay 13 percent inheritance tax on inheritance amount over $15,000, and individuals who aren't related to the benefactor have to pay an 18 percent inheritance tax on any inheritance amount exceeding $10,000.
Politics in Nebraska
Nebraska is generally considered a Republican state — the last time a Democratic candidate won the state was in 1964. However, it's one of two states — Maine is the other — that doesn't give all of its electoral votes to the presidential candidate that wins the state.
Instead, the candidate who wins the most votes statewide is awarded two of the state's five electoral votes. Then, the state's three congressional districts each get one electoral vote, which means there's a possibility that more than one candidate could win electoral votes from the state. For example, in 2008, John McCain beat out Barack Obama in Nebraska with a 15 percent majority. However, Obama won the Second Congressional District with a 1.2 percent majority, so Obama was awarded one electoral vote, and McCain was awarded four.
Nebraska Fun Facts
- Nebraska was once known as "The Great American Desert," but it has more miles of river than any other state. Also, you can find the largest indoor rainforest in the United States, the Lied Jungle, at the Henry Doorly Zoo, which is most undesert-like.
- Omaha is home to a 6-foot-tall statue of Chef Boyardee — the real-life chef who graced cans of Spaghetti-Os. But canned pasta isn't the only food item the state is known for; Reuben sandwiches and Kool-Aid were all invented in Nebraska.
- The Village of Lehigh once had a law that banned merchants from selling donut holes. The chairman of the village board believed that donut holes were just waste and merchants were selling them for an undue profit. Fortunately, the law was repealed in 1990 so you can now enjoy the tasty treat.