Sober Living Timeline

How Long Can You Stay In a Sober Living?

Sober Living programs offer a supportive and structured home environment for those who are transitioning from inpatient addiction treatment back into independent living. This transition can be extremely challenging, and sober living homes can increase success, but how long can you stay, and is there a time limit? 

There are guidelines, but the answer is different for each person. 

How Long Can You Stay In a Sober Living House?

Each person’s journey through drug or alcohol addiction recovery is different and requires an individualized plan. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. This means that an effective timeline of treatment is tailored to the individual – and this includes sober living

Sober living programs don’t have an expiration date. Some individuals may need assistance through this transitional phase for sixty to ninety days. Others may require a longer duration of support, extending to six months or more.

The purpose of this extended support is to provide the necessary education and assistance individuals need to make a successful transition to independent living. 

As long as an individual is adhering to their addiction recovery plan, participating in therapies and group therapy sessions, following the rules of the sober living residence, and working toward the goal of independence, they won’t be ejected from the program. If relapse occurs or it’s determined that additional support is needed, the individual may be required to transition back into inpatient treatment. 

Understanding the Timeline for Sober Living 

The National Institute of Drug Abuse recommends a stay of at least ninety days for a sober living program to be effective. This may sound like a significant amount of time, but for many, it’s only the baseline of what’s needed to reach addiction-free independence. 

Individuals who stay in sober living residences for twelve to eighteen months have significantly improved outcomes compared to those who stay for ninety days. This is especially true for sober living residents with severe or complex addiction issues. 

Each person in a sober living facility is required to participate in continual addiction treatment programs. This may include:

  • Support group attendance
  • Individual counseling
  • Regularly meeting with their addiction counselor
    Employment and Vocational Training
  • Educational workshops
  • Relapse Prevention Training

The timeline for sober living is largely dependent on the individual’s commitment and progress during their stay. The addiction or sober living counselor can assist each person in developing a transitional timeline that works for them while also keeping in mind that it needs to remain flexible. 

A stay in sober living might also be extended if a person is working toward an educational or job goal, building a supportive outside peer network, or is having difficulty finding a place to live that is safe and supportive of their recovery. 

When Should A Person Leave Sober Living

How do you know when you’re ready to take the next step from sober living into fully independent living? There are multiple factors to consider, and your addiction treatment team can help you determine when you are ready to move on from the sober living environment. 

One of the main signs of readiness for independent living is maintaining sobriety. This achievement comes without the need for increased addiction treatment support. It shows that the individual can manage cravings effectively. They also have the ability to avoid tempting and uncomfortable situations. Additionally, they have developed effective coping strategies. These strategies help them deal with substance use triggers.

Having social, residential, and economic support is a key indicator of readiness to move on from sober living. This support includes access to a safe, stable home. It also involves having a sober family. Additionally, a social support system is important. This system should hold the person accountable and support their sobriety. Solid financial footing is also essential.

Finally, it’s important that the individual has a plan and goals for the future. This helps them feel like each minute of their day has a sense of purpose. This may include continued outpatient treatment, mental health care, taking care of their physical health, steady employment, educational goals, and a vision of how continued sobriety will enhance their future. 

Finding a Sober Living Program 

If you are unsure where to look for an effective, accredited sober living program, we can help. At Massachusetts Center for Addiction, we offer a MAT-friendly program designed for you. 
Are you ready to learn more? Contact the Massachusetts Center for Addiction today at 844-486-0671.

MCA Staff
Written By

MCA Staff

The Massachusetts Center for Addiction expert staff is dedicated to helping individuals overcome... Read More

Contact Us



1515 Hancock Street, Suite 300
Quincy, MA 02169

Phone Number

24/7 Support

Start your recovery with
Massachusetts Center for Addiction

Our team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to answer any questions you may have. Give us a call today and begin your journey toward long-term recovery.

MCA Contact Form