Sober Living Apartments vs. Homes vs. Halfway Houses

Kitchen at Lighthouse Recovery's sober living house in Dallas, TX.

When looking into sober living programs, you’ll find an array of not just types of programs, but housing choices as well. At Lighthouse Recovery in Dallas, we choose to offer sober living homes instead of sober living apartments or dorm-style halfway houses. Let’s look into some of the benefits and challenges of each type of dwelling as it relates to staying sober.

Sober living apartments


  • Independence in food, chores, activities. Unlike a sober living house where there’s a communal kitchen (fully stocked to meet any dietary restriction at Lighthouse Recovery!) which invites communal meals and more time with other residents, at an apartment the one or two residents who dwell in the same apartment are the only ones sharing food or chores. There is more alone time for apartment residents.
  • Recreational nights. Many sober living apartments offer chances for the apartment residents to gather as a larger group through on-site recreational activities, like game nights or movie nights.


  • Solitude. While certainly some more private individuals or introverts might find the independence of sober living apartments a pro, for the addict, it can cause solitude. Solitude isn’t productive to individuals fighting substance abuse, who need accountability, encouragement, and support. Having a closed space where you don’t have to face anyone could hide a relapse, whereas at a sober living house, you have house managers living with you, who know you well and are there to help you stay sober.
  • Sobriety stability prior to enrolling. Because sober living apartments provide less visibility for case managers, residents are usually expected to be well into their sobriety journey. They are not best for people early in sobriety.

IOP Program Benefits


We employ staff specializing in a wide range of modalities, allowing us to provide a more comprehensive approach. These modalities include, but are not limited to: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Psychodynamic Interpersonal Therapy (PIT), and Eye Movement Desensitization, and Reprocessing (EMDR).


Our highly trained staff work intensively with clients to address core issues. Every IOP session is aimed at reducing negative behaviors by addressing the emotions and thoughts that are often behind them. We work diligently and compassionately to make clients feel safe and understood.


Our flexible programming allows clients to continue to live at home, go to work or attend school, and still get the therapeutic support they need. The average intensive outpatient program lasts eight to twelve weeks and combines three group therapy sessions and one individual therapy session per week. We offer night groups and telehealth options for those with busier schedules.


Depending on the severity of the client’s case, programmatic therapy can be dramatically more cost-effective than a standard Inpatient Treatment program. We work with most private insurance providers to offset the majority of programming costs.

Insurances We Accept

Lighthouse accepts 100+ private insurance policies and offers cost-effective private-pay plans.

Sober living houses


  • Space. A sober living house provides the most space compared with the other options. While every sober living home will differ, at Lighthouse Recovery, we have a max of 8 residents per home and only 2 to a room. We have spacious homes with big backyards, creating a safe, private environment in which residents want to spend time.
  • Accountability. Unlike a sober living apartment, our sober living homes in Dallas provide the highest level of accountability for residents. We have two live-in house managers who know their residents well, and with a small ratio of 3 residents: 1 staff, we see and understand each of our residents. Subtle changes that may indicate a relapse is near are noticed, and we provide the support and tools to fight them. We also offer randomized drug and alcohol testing, at no extra cost.
  • Programming. Of course, each sober living program offers different levels of programming. At Lighthouse Recovery in Dallas, our programming uses a completely personalized progress-based approach. We know every individual has a different recovery journey, and so milestones will follow a unique timeline. Our programming includes weekly individual, group, and family sessions with our licensed therapists as well as recreational programming.


  • Cost. As they say, “you get what you pay for”. Sober living homes might be a little more of an investment than a dorm-like halfway house, but your sobriety is worth it. At Lighthouse Recovery, we’re a nationally-recognized, research-based sober living program with a 78% success rate for graduates. Because of our programming, small ratios, and beautiful, spacious homes we help residents achieve long-term success.  Rather than enroll in cheap program after cheap program without success, enroll in one tailored for you and break the chains of addiction for good.

Halfway houses


  • Cost-effective. Halfway houses are usually the most inexpensive sober living option for a few reasons. Many are government-subsidized, and they are typically laid out dorm-style, housing as many as 6 residents in a room and 18 per house.


  • Busy. With so many residents in close quarters, sober living in a halfway house can feel a little crowded. While complete solitude isn’t conducive to getting sober, it can be a little overwhelming to have constant companionship and noise in your home environment.
  • Broad programming. Many halfway houses use a standardized program plan for all residents. The programming is based on science and best practices, but unfortunately, a one-size-fits-all approach leaves many addicts behind to fall through the cracks. Whether that programming timing is too quick, too slow, or too broad can hinder the journey to sobriety.

If you’re looking to stay sober, check out the sober living homes by Lighthouse Recovery in Dallas. You can give us a call to confidentially discuss if our program is right for you.

Why Choose our Dallas IOP?


Lighthouse IOP

Standard IOP

Program Philosophy
and Structure

  • Individualized, custom-built, and holistic curriculum

  • Maximum of 8 persons per group

  • Each client is matched with a Recovery Coach who can provide support outside of clinical programming by setting goals, building engagement in outside recovery groups, and creating accountability

  • All Lighthouse Therapists are Masters-level clinicans with a wide range of experiences so we can best match client to Therapist

  • Both in-person and Teleheath attendance options available

  • Both day and night groups available

  • 24/7 access to support plus 12 months of extended support

  • Standardized programming (usually an "off-the-shelf" curriculum)

  • Up to 30 persons per group

  • No Recovery Coaching i.e. program is limited to only hours spent in group and individual therapy leaving significant "gaps" in coverage

  • Experience of Therapist varies from company to company as does the ability to "match" a client with the most applicable Theraupetic experience

  • Attendance options vary from company to company

  • Group options vary from company to company

  • Extended support varies from company to company

Additional Program Features

  • Lighthouse is in-network with the most common insurance policies and accepts 100+ policies on an Out of Network basis

  • Preferred Access to our Recovery Coaching Program

  • Robust Network i.e. psychiatrists, neurofeeback specialists, etc.

  • Beautifully designed, private office building centrally located in Dallas, TX

  • In Network benefits vary from company to company

  • No access to in-house Recovery Coaching offered

  • Referral Network for Auxiliary Services varies from company to company

  • Condition and privacy of office varies from company to company

IOP Frequently Asked Questions

What is IOP?

Intensive outpatient program (IOP) is a lower level of care on the spectrum of treatment.  It usually consists of three 3-hour group sessions a week with a licensed therapist and at least one 1-hour individual therapy session. IOP is perfect for those stepping down from a Residential or Inpatient Treatment Center, or those that are unable to commit to going away for a minimum of 30 days. IOP is often a good alternative for those with families or careers that they are unable to take too much time away from.

Is IOP right for me?

An intensive outpatient program is suitable for most people at some point in their recovery journey. Although we like to be able to help as many individuals as possible at Lighthouse, some clients require a higher level of care initially due to the severity of their addiction and are later suitable for the IOP level of care. We offer a free assessment for everyone who calls needing help with no obligation to enroll in our programs. Let one of our trained professionals help you make the determination.

How long does IOP last?

Typically, an IOP lasts 8 to 12 weeks. There are a number of factors that help determine the intensive outpatient program length, such as insurance benefits, medical necessity, and engagement.

How much does IOP cost?

Treatment can be expensive, but IOP is often on the lower end cost-wise when comparing it to Residential or Inpatient care. We’re able to work with most private insurances to help offset the cost of your treatment with us.  If for some reason your insurance doesn’t cover our program or you don’t have insurance, we can always discuss our Scholarship Self-Pay rates. Our finance team may be able to help you set up a payment plan, if you are unable to come up with the full cost upfront.

What happens if I relapse in an IOP?

As unfortunate as it may appear to be at the time, every experience can be turned into a positive lesson, if you are honest and seek immediate help. For some people, relapse is part of the process and it only has to be a negative if you don’t work to get back on track. It’s hard for some people to come to terms with being addicted to alcohol or drugs, so a relapse could be the motivation to focus harder on their recovery. If one does occur, call your support system and your program contact immediately. One mistake does not have to derail your journey to lasting recovery and happiness.

Contact Us for a Free and Confidential Assessment