How To Choose A Retirement Community

March 20, 2020

Written by Juanita Fox

Choosing a retirement community is kind of like choosing a college—it’s an exciting time with dreams for the future and opportunities for new relationships.

In 2016 Art and Tina Petrosemolo began their search for a retirement community. Their search took them to New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania. They considered 55+ communities as well as continuing care retirement communities. They weighed the benefits for both types of communities and ultimately chose Garden Spot Village, because as Art says, “I didn’t want to move twice.”

As you consider your next steps, remember it’s crucial to find a community that can meet your physical, financial and social needs with a location and atmosphere that can truly become home.

The following considerations will help you to narrow the choices and find the best possible retirement community for you.

Choose the Type of Retirement Community You Want to Live In

Did you know there is more than one type of retirement community? Each style has a different level of involvement and care and may appeal to different retirees depending on age, health and level of independence. Decide which type sounds like the right fit for you, so you can take the first step in finding your perfect retirement community.

55+ Communities: In a 55+ retirement community residents either own or rent the land as well as own or rent their home. In most cases, residents enjoy low-maintenance living, as well as community amenities and social calendars. In 55+ communities people generally remain active in retirement.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC): CCRCs offer a continuum of care, with most people moving into the community as an independent living resident. Housing options for independent living include single family homes, cottages and spacious apartments. Many people choose this option because it allows them to work, volunteer and travel without having to worry about home maintenance.

In a CCRC, as care is needed, people can choose to add additional services through in-home care or by moving to personal care or skilled nursing.

Art Petrosemolo says, “We looked long and hard at 55+ communities. They looked appealing to us because we did not need to worry about maintenance. But we soon learned that if you move to a 55-plus community, as nice as it is and you are active at the time, it’s not your last move. We saw many people who had been in 55-plus communities, maybe 10 years. Their health had deteriorated and they had to find another place to live. I decided I wasn’t going to move twice. We learned about CCRCs and began to look for those types of communities. Garden Spot Village, with the new construction at Sycamore Springs, offered us a fairly quick move-in option, so we opted for that. A lot of communities had two or three year waiting lists and we didn’t want to wait that long.”

Janice Ford, who moved to the Sycamore Springs neighborhood at Garden Spot Village in July 2017, recommends, “Check out different places. Don’t stick to one—check them all out! I was a nurse, so one of the things I always checked out was the skilled nursing and the assisted living. Garden Spot Village has a very unique design. It’s not a traditional nursing unit. The households at Garden Spot Village offer a very homey and open atmosphere.”

Consider the Location of Your Retirement Community

When it comes to buying a home, location is widely considered among the most important factors. Those thinking about retirement communities will find that location bears the same significance. Your choice of locale will set the scene for your retirement years, so consider whether you’d like to settle down in the bustling city, the quiet countryside or somewhere in between. Do you like a warm or cool climate? Distinct seasons? An abundance of nature or a richly defined culture?

Lancaster, Pennsylvania, for example, was recently named one of the best places to retire in the U.S. due to its affordability, diverse culture and excellent health care access. Make a list of the factors important to you, and begin researching!

Research Amenities, Activities and Things to Do in the Retirement Community

Your retirement years are the perfect time to learn a new skill, start an encore career, connect deeply with a community and spend your time doing what you love. A home at Sycamore Springs, a neighborhood at Garden Spot Village in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, allows you to retire with purpose.

Designed for people over 55 who want to pursue an intentional, active living lifestyle, Sycamore Springs offers a host of amenities and events. With social clubs, biking paths, art studios, woodworking and metal shops, a theater and fitness center, Sycamore Springs offers residents a variety of opportunities to live with purpose in community.

Each retirement community will offer its own unique flavor. Take the time to consider the kinds of activities you’d like to pursue and research what each retirement community has to offer!

Begin Planning for Retirement by Touring Potential Homes

No matter where you are in your retirement journey, it’s never too early to begin looking ahead toward the future. If you’re ready to tour potential homes and pave the way for your retirement, contact us today. We have new construction retirement homes available, and we’d be happy to answer any questions you have and schedule a tour of our Sycamore Springs retirement community neighborhood.

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