What Types of Care do Adult Family Homes Offer?

Learn about Adult Family Homes in Washington State including regulations, services, costs and how to find one. Get answers to frequently asked questions.
Nurse assisting senior with walking cane

When looking for a residential care option for seniors, it’s helpful to understand what kind of care options are available. Adult family homes (AFHs) offer a home-like atmosphere, with only a small number of residents receiving personalized care. This can make the transition to senior living more manageable and less stressful. Let’s look at the types of care that residents can find in an adult family home.

Assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)

In adult family homes, staff members provide residents with the assistance they need for activities of daily living (ADLs), such as bathing, dressing, grooming, and toileting. Staff members are trained to offer these services, and to assist residents with their daily needs, including medication management for those who need it.



AFHs provide meals for their residents, which are typically served three times a day. These meals are usually prepared with balanced nutrition in mind to meet the dietary needs of the residents. If you or your loved one has specific dietary requirements, special diets can also be accommodated with advance notice. 



To ensure that residents’ living spaces are well-maintained, adult family homes provide housekeeping services, which include laundry and cleaning. This allows residents to relax and enjoy their time without worrying about maintaining their living space.


Recreational Activities

Most adult family homes coordinate recreational activities to keep their residents engaged and active. These activities can range from exercise classes to games, and even social events. These times of recreation are not only beneficial for the residents’ physical health, but also for their emotional well-being.


Specialized Care

Some adult family homes offer specialized care for residents with specific needs such as dementia or Alzheimer’s. These homes have staff members who are trained to provide care for residents with these conditions, and they also have specialized programs and activities that are designed to meet the unique needs of these residents. These homes often have additional safety measures in place, such as secure outdoor spaces and specialized memory care units.


24-Hour Supervision

Residents in AFHs can take comfort in knowing that they have 24-hour supervision to ensure their safety and well-being. Dedicated staff members are on duty at all times and are available to assist with any needs, as well as respond to emergency situations. 



Companionship is highly valued as an essential component of care in AFHs. The smaller, more intimate setting enables residents to form meaningful relationships with other residents and staff members, promoting a sense of belonging and social connectedness. This is especially significant for older adults who may be living far from their loved ones or experiencing feelings of isolation. A sense of community can positively impact the overall well-being of residents.


Bottom Line

An adult family home is one option available for seniors who are seeking residential care, with a more personal touch.  With their welcoming home-like living environment and compassionate staff, these homes are dedicated to providing top-notch personalized care. When choosing an AFH, it’s essential to take your or your loved one’s unique needs and preferences into account. Visiting the home and speaking with staff members will help give you a sense of the level of care provided. By knowing what to expect in terms of care that will be provided, you can have peace of mind, knowing that you or your loved one will receive the quality attention and support that is deserved. 

Are you working to become a licensed adult family home?

Benefits of AFHC Membership:

Resource Library + Advocacy + Marketing

  1. Support for staff hiring and training
  2. WAC/RCW clarification
  3. Medicaid questions
  4. Regulatory assistance
  5. And much much more

Learn more about the benefits of joining the Adult Family Home Council.