Halfway Homes vs. Sober Living vs. Transitional Living

Apartment sober living home

Dane O'Leary September 15, 2020

For someone who’s recently sober, the period of adjustment after completing an addiction treatment program is an especially vulnerable time. Spending time in a transitional living environment can help sustain a person’s newfound sobriety. 

Transitional living, sober living, and halfway homes are terms often used interchangeably in addiction treatment circles. Let’s discuss the similarities, and more importantly, differences between these three concepts. 

What Is A Transitional Living House?

A halfway house, sober living home, home for older homeless youth, and foster home are all examples of a transitional living house. 

Transitional living acts as an umbrella term for any residential environment that provides a temporary home to people getting back on their feet. A transitional living facility can take any form, including supervised apartments, communal homes, and dorms. 

People who have completed a residential substance abuse treatment program, and are looking for a place to stay while they figure out their next steps, can opt for a halfway house or a sober living home. Let’s compare these two types of transitional living.

Halfway Homes and Houses

Who is it geared towards?

Halfway homes or houses can be open to anyone looking for accommodation while they find their footing back into everyday life but are mostly used by recently released prisoners. Halfway houses fulfill a social service requirement for low-cost transitional living. 

Who runs it?

State-owned halfway houses are usually managed by government workers or private contractors assigned through the Bureau of Prisons. Irrespective of its operational management, halfway house staff are not necessarily required to have any specific mental health training or background. 

Who pays for it?

Halfway homes are state-owned and state-funded facilities with rent contributions from residents expected.

What is it like?

Halfway homes can become crowded and take on the form of a dormitory for adults more often than not. Halfway houses offer residents in need of housing a place to stay but don’t emphasize creating an environment supporting emotional or physical wellbeing.

On the other hand, sober living homes are set up with addiction recovery and well-being in mind. 

Sober Living Home

Who is it geared towards?

Sober living homes are geared to support newly recovering addicts adjust to life after rehab. 

Who pays for it?

Residents are expected to pay rent while living in a sober living home. Sober living homes are privately-owned facilities, and it’s seldom that health insurance policies cover any sober living costs. 

Who runs it?

Sober living homes are usually affiliated with a mental health treatment center or a specific substance abuse support program. Staff living in or managing sober living homes are often counselors or specialists in the mental health or addiction treatment fields. 

What is it like?

A sober living home aims to help newly recovering individuals maintain their sobriety while rebuilding an addiction-free life.

Sober living houses are smaller residential setups, usually not catering to more than ten residents at a time. Sober living homes place great emphasis on creating a drug- and alcohol-free environment where residents can access a range of support measures and amenities.

In effect, a sober living home is a group residence that aims to help newly recovering individuals maintain their sobriety while rebuilding an addiction-free life. 

Sober Living: What You Need to Know

Some sober living homes may offer up opportunities to have peer support group meetings at the house, however, ‘formal’ addiction treatment isn’t received there. Residents still need to travel to their therapist, doctor, or treatment center to keep up with their treatment program. 

Sober living homes have rules and regulations all residents are required to follow. This can include anything from consenting to regular drug screenings to sticking to curfews. Sober living homes can be a meaningful platform from which someone who is at the start of their sobriety journey can gradually strengthen newly acquired life skills and coping mechanisms. 

Spending time in a sober living home is a sound relapse prevention strategy for early recovery. With round-the-clock access to support, and staying in a substance-free environment, it’s easier to withstand the temptation of falling back into drug-using habits.

Silicon Beach Treatment Center Offers Top-Tier Treatment and Sober Living 

Our Silicon Beach rehab offers clients a range of addiction and mental health support options. Beyond treating substance abuse and co-occurring disorders, our drug rehab in LA also allows clients to stay in a sober living home. Our LA addiction treatment program provides clients with a choice between three fully-equipped sober living homes.

Whether you’re looking for Los Angeles rehab or sober living, the staff at Silicon Beach Treatment Center can help. Get in touch today.

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