For a variety of reasons, people choose to move out of their houses upon or shortly after retirement. Some individuals want to have fewer rooms to clean, and others are looking to lower their bills. Still others wish to finally live in their dream locations. Physical limitations and ailments can also cause homeowners to have to sell their properties as they age. When it comes to where to move next, many options exist. Choosing a retirement community is a smart move for several reasons.
Multiple Floor Plans
When people envision retirement communities, some of them picture nursing homes with rooms that are all virtually identical to one another. These two types of living facilities are not the same. Moving into a retirement community typically gives buyers and renters the option to choose from different floor plans. For example, couples may want a cozy one-bedroom condo or a larger space with enough bedrooms for the grandchildren to stay overnight. New residents may choose a second-floor unit to reduce noise or a first-floor space to eliminate the need to climb stairs.
Retirement communities recognize the physical needs and potential limitations of aging populations. Plenty of single-level units are typically available. Further, interested parties can look into units with accessible entrances, such as ramps. Even when these features aren’t required at the current time, people can plan for possible future needs. Potential buyers can look into units with accessible bathroom features as well. For example, some of the units can come with roll-in or walk-in showers to eliminate the risks associated with stepping over a high edge of a tub.
Some people are worried about selling their homes and moving because they know how important it is to take their precious fur babies along with them. Fortunately, pet-friendly units and communities do exist. In some communities, certain units or buildings will be reserved for owners who have pets. In other communities, pets will be permitted in all dwellings. Pet parents can look into communities that have plenty of space to walk the dogs. There are some communities where pets are allowed as visitors only. People with family members who have pets can benefit from these types of communities. While the residents themselves don’t own animals, their relatives can visit with pets.
Retirement communities also tend to offer organized recreational activities on a regular basis. There might be exercise classes provided on certain days per week, or the activities staff might schedule a weekly game night or book club. These types of activities provide seniors with a great way to get involved and to form connections with other residents without having to leave the premises. Of course, residents likely want to explore their new community, but they also can find activities on-site when the weather is bad or if they don’t want to drive at night.
In addition to scheduled activities, retirement communities also tend to have amenities that residents can use at their leisure during opening hours. Examples of such amenities include pools, saunas, tennis courts, gyms, card games, and lounges. Many residents prefer a mix of structured and unstructured activities. Having access to these facilities at various hours of the day provides that freedom.
Some senior communities host events throughout the year. These events could be related to certain holidays or seasons. During the winter holidays, residents might be encouraged to invite relatives to attend the events as well. Events vary but could include raffles or dinner and dancing. When the weather is warmer, people may gather together on the lawn to barbecue for either an organized or informal event. Residents may also have the option to rent out a space on the premises to host their own celebrations.
Religious Happenings and Spaces
Depending upon the nature of the community, there may be religious houses of worship on the campus. There could also be a chapel that is not related to any particular denomination but that does give dwellers a place to retreat for quiet prayer or meditation. The community may also host certain religious events or holidays. Prospective buyers or renters who want to live in a faith-based community should conduct research on those specific types of living spaces.
Sense of Community
When people age, they sometimes feel isolated from their communities. They might live a significant distance from their loved ones, or they may feel as though they can’t relate to the other people in their neighborhoods. Moving into a retirement community can help people manage these feelings of isolation. Residents will be surrounded by others who lived through similar time periods and perhaps had shared experiences growing up. Living in a retirement community could also be a source of comfort for individuals who have lost a spouse or partner. Widowers can have the opportunity to connect with each other and act as a system of support. Having neighbors very close by can also provide seniors with comfort and an additional layer of security.
Health Care Options
Residents might find themselves in need of immediate health care, and some senior living communities offer that feature. There might be a doctor or other medical facility on the campus. Also, some retirement facilities are associated with a nursing home. The nursing home could be on the same property, or it might be in another nearby location. In any case, if residents find themselves in need of either short-term or long-term nursing care, they can move into the affiliated facility. Knowing that there are medical services available, whether in the event of an emergency or a more minor illness, can give seniors a greater sense of safety.
When people get older, they often have decisions to make about where they want to live. While some individuals choose to stay in their homes, others want a new experience. They want to live in a space with other people who understand their needs and their lives. Moving into a retirement community is a way to fulfill this need and to even find new friends and hobbies.