Heading into retirement can be an exciting time in life. You’re looking at the freedom to spend the day gardening, traveling, having tea with friends, or anything you want. And since a lot of retirees are looking for a change of pace – either less expensive locations or a smaller home – knowing how to find retirement communities is an essential skill.
Of course, we would be remiss to not recommend starting your search online. However, it’s important to narrow down your search. Otherwise the nearly endless options can get overwhelming quickly.
Here’s a look at the process of finding retirement communities, resources you can use, and considerations that you must make to find the right community.
How to find retirement communities online
Ah… the old search engine rabbit hole. Is that what you’re thinking? It’s true with all the possibilities that you could get lost in the world wide web of retirement communities. However, one area where search engines like Google are helpful is in finding local retirement communities. If you don’t want to stray too much further than your local community, a local search may be all you need. There are additional ways to find retirement communities that are not as local.
One helpful website is SeniorLiving.org. You can simply enter a zip code into this website’s search bar, and it will provide retirement community listings in your desired area. If you already have a state in mind for retirement, then using SeniorLiving.org’s search function will be helpful. This website also provides various facilities, from assisted living and nursing home care to independent living options. The website also offers toll-free calls to senior living consultants who may be able to help answer specific questions you have about types of facilities.
How to find retirement communities that make you feel young
Some retirement communities might feel like an institution, and retirees do not always desire that. After all, just because someone is retired or retiring does not mean they are an “old person.” Many retirees are vibrant, healthy, and active, and want a retirement community that fits their lifestyle.
There are exquisite retirement communities all over the country that provide on-site restaurants, spas, and entertainment options. Some offer art classes, yoga, swimming pools, and exercise facilities. These communities feel more like home than an institution or a health facility, which is precisely what many healthy retirees look for in a retirement community.
Retirement communities can provide care while avoiding the institution feeling
There are retirement communities that provide the types of amenities listed above while also having assisted living or nursing settings on the premises. Many of these communities are set up in a way where the reality of continuing care is unobtrusive, but easily available. The knowledge that continuing care is accessible provides a level of comfort for those who need it.
Additional considerations for choosing a retirement community
When you’re thinking about how to find retirement communities, consider a few characteristics before selecting a place to live.
First, think about the kind of weather you enjoy. Florida is well known for its retirement communities, but Florida’s heat and humidity are not ideal for all retirees. Long, cold winters are often undesirable to retirees as well, so a location like Alaska might be out of the question.
Next, consider your budget. Ensure that the retirement community you’re interested in is affordable. Determine this by asking about any types of monthly or yearly fees associated with the property. Sit down with a trusted friend, family member, or financial advisor to determine what communities fit into your budget.
Finally, determine the level of maintenance at the retirement community. Will you have to mow the lawn or take out the garbage, or is that type of work covered by the community? It is worth knowing before moving in so you can be fully prepared.
What do you want out of a retirement community?