A surprisingly small percentage of seniors choose to move into retirement communities. However, they may be missing out on some of the best years of their lives.
Retirement communities are created to make your life enjoyable, comfortable, and safe. Between the amazing communities of other people and all of the recreational opportunities, many consider living in a retirement home to be a permanent vacation.
However, when it comes time to move into a retirement community, there are a lot of considerations to keep in mind.
How do you find a high-quality affordable retirement community that's right for you?
Keep reading for an in-depth guide!
How to Find the Best and Most Affordable Retirement Community
Not all retirement communities are created equal. That's why it's always a good idea to do plenty of research before you invest your time, money, and life into a new home.
Follow along as we walk you through all of the steps you should take to pick a retirement community that will keep you comfortable while you enjoy your life!
1. Ask for Recommendations
The first thing you should do is ask the people around you for their advice. Maybe you have some friends or family members who are already residents at a retirement community. That may be a great place to start, as they would be a warm welcome as you move to a new place.
However, if you're on Facebook, you can also post a request for recommendations to your friend list or to community pages. Facebook community pages are great for finding reviews and opinions about different facilities.
2. Check Out Online Reviews
Another way to find an affordable retirement community is by searching for online reviews. You can do this a number of ways.
First, if you have a few places in mind, visit their websites. Most often, retirement community websites will publish their reviews and testimonials to help increase awareness and increase their credibility.
Alternatively, you can turn to Google or Yelp for online reviews. If you search directly for the reviews for a specific retirement community, you are likely to find a lot of information.
3. Look Into Pricing and Insurance Coverage
Next, you need to think about your budget. How much can you afford? How can you pay for a retirement home?
These are important questions to ask when choosing an affordable retirement community. However, it's important to remember that you often get what you pay for. Opting for the absolute cheapest option you can find may not be the best choice.
Sit down with a trusted friend or family member and take a look at your finances. Determine what your monthly bills will look like and if it's a lifestyle you can sustain long term. It's also advisable to have your lawyer look over all of the documentation before you sign and move into a community.
4. Ask About Recreational Activities
Another important factor for many people looking for an affordable retirement community is the recreational activities it offers.
While sitting at home and relaxing is a great perk to being retired, sometimes you need to get out and do things! Many retirement communities offer a whole range of recreational activities including swimming, golf, tennis, dancing, art classes, music, games, trivia, and more.
If you enjoy being active and spending time with others, make sure the retirement community you choose offers plenty of options.
5. Find Out About the Community
Next, the community itself is important. You may want to choose an affordable retirement community where you already know some of the residents.
If that's not an option, schedule a tour with different retirement communities and walk around the area. Trust your gut. You should get a strong feeling about whether or not it's the right place for you based on the atmosphere.
Do people seem happy? Does it look like everyone's treated well? Is it clean and well-kept?
6. Ask About Their Medical Care
A big determining factor when choosing an affordable retirement community falls on medical care. What type of medical care and/or special treatments are available to you?
For that matter, do you have any conditions that may require special doctors or physicians? If so, maybe staying close to your specialists maybe your best option.
7. Does It Provide a Comfortable Lifestyle?
Additionally, when considering an affordable retirement community, you need to think about the lifestyle you want. This includes recreational activities and the community of people as we spoke of earlier, but it also includes pets, family members, gardening, etc.
Many retirement communities have certain restrictions. You need to know if you'll be able to bring any existing pets or add new ones to your life in the future. This also includes having any family members move in with you for long or short periods of time.
Alternatively, if you love gardening or outdoor grilling, will you have space for it? Will you even be allowed to have a garden or a grill? These are important things to know before committing to the community.
8. Is the Retirement Community in the Right Location?
Finally, the location could be a make-it or break-it factor in finding an affordable retirement community.
You need to think about how what type of climate you want to be in. For example, many people decide to retire down south where it's consistently warmer. Some simply prefer to stay where there is year-round nice weather.
On the other hand, maybe your top priority is staying close to your family. In this case, you'll be somewhat limited in your options. This may mean staying where you're at or moving to a new location to be closer.
Take Your Time
Moving into an affordable retirement community isn't permanent. If you move in and decide you don't like it, you're not stuck there forever.
However, to avoid a lot of headaches, it's important to take your time when deciding where you want to live out this next phase of your life. Just remember to do what's right for you, try not to make any decisions based on what other people want.
Good luck! And remember to check out the rest of our blog for more helpful articles and advice!