When confronted with the term “retirement community”, many people think of nursing homes or assisted living facilities. But today’s active adult communities are nothing like the ones of the past.  These age-restricted communities are built for independent living older adults (usually age 55 and over) who are ready to downsize and live a more maintenance-free lifestyle.  Whether you have retired, been widowed, or simply find your current home too large to manage, an active adult community may be the perfect place for you to start a new chapter in your life.  Here are some perks of living in a 55+ community:

  • ACTIVE LIFESTYLE
    If you want to maintain an active lifestyle, then a 55+ community is the place for you!  There are a plethora of ways to stay active with workout facilities, pools, and handicapped accessible walking trails; and fun activities such as cooking classes, shuffleboard, and organized field trips.  And staying active doesn’t just mean strenuous physical activity.  Being social is an important part of maintaining an active lifestyle too.  Lots of these communities offer opportunities to socialize with things like book clubs, classes, bingo, charity work & service projects, coffee groups, and movie nights.  Staying active is so important to physical health and there are specific health benefits associated with being active and social in later years.  These benefits include: reduced risk of cardiovascular problems, increased longevity, reduced risk of stroke, stronger immune system, less risk of Alzheimer’s disease, lower blood pressure and better overall mental health. The Top 5 Reasons Seniors Should Stay Socially Active

     
  • SENSE OF COMMUNITY
    We’re using that word a lot, but community is what it’s all about! The sense of community felt among residents of a 55+ neighborhood is one of the main differences in living there versus a typical residential neighborhood.  This can have a huge impact on a person’s sense of well-being and quality of life. Neighbors in these communities are in the same stage of life and often share similar desires and goals.  They become a kind of “family” who look out for each other and take care of each other in times of need.

     
  • MAINTENANCE FREE LIVING
    Many 55+ communities offer maintenance-free living. What does that mean?  Well, it can vary, but it usually includes all exterior building maintenance including streets, sidewalks, roofs and driveways.  In addition, staff will typically: take care of weeds, fertilize lawns, blow clippings off sidewalks and driveways, spread mulch, edge the lawn along walkways and driveways, change hard to reach light bulbs, and make interior repairs on major appliances and exterior repairs to roofing, downspouts and more. 

     
  • RETIREMENT LIVING BEFORE YOU RETIRE
    You do not have to retire from your job to live in a 55+ community.  They are often referred to as “retirement” communities, but in truth the only restrictions for residents are age and income.  You can keep your job and still enjoy the benefits that will allow you so much more free time for fun and travel.

     
  • FEELING SAFE & SECURE
    Many active adult communities are gated and only allow residents and their guests to be admitted onto the property. Some will also have security staff on-site for residents’ protection.  Security may also include: lighted parking lots, sidewalks, streets, and common areas, working fire alarms and smoke detectors, emergency evacuation maps posted, and clearly marked exit doors.

     
  • DOWNSIZING BECAUSE YOU WANT TO, NOT BECAUSE YOU HAVE TO
    Downsizing on your own terms is so much better than the stress that comes with having to move due to an illness or injury. Moving while still healthy and active is an easier process and allows you to take your time and make thoughtful choices.  Selling your home is also less emotional and overwhelming when it is your choice and not something you are being forced to do.  Choosing to move into a 55+ community while you are still healthy and active allows you to be in control of your own future and how you want to spend your time and money. Downsizing Your Home: 3 Money Benefits

If you have recently become an “empty nester” and you or your partner are 55 or older, an active adult community might be just the place for you to start fresh. Melissa Thompson is an experienced, professional Realtor who can help you get the best price possible on the sale of your current home so that you can join in the fun of living in a 55+ community! Give her a call today at 901-729-9526!

Photo Credit: go4life.nia.nih.gov