Shirley was excited about her upcoming move. At almost 75, she just didn’t know what to do with her huge house anymore. Last year, her husband had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and he was rapidly declining. She knew they needed help. Shirley looked forward to living in a senior retirement community designed especially for people like her and her husband. She was still active and could live in her own home in the community and her husband would be nearby in the same community, just in the assisted living and memory care program section. Shirley wouldn’t have to worry about home repairs anymore, appliances going out, and keeping up the big yard. And, she wouldn’t even have to cook dinner anymore! The community had several options for meals. It would be fun to make new friends while eating at a nice restaurant, designed especially for connected seniors like herself. And the best part – her new apartment would be just the perfect size, with a view of the Sandia mountains. Rio Rancho could still be home.
Many seniors find themselves in the same situation as Shirley. You may feel the need to downsize after the kids left home to make life manageable. Here are some aspects to consider when exploring the option of moving into a retirement or 55 plus community designed especially to meet the needs of seniors.
Just the right size. We already talked about the need for a more manageable life. If you are in your retirement years and find yourself in need of just the perfect home size, you aren’t alone. Luxury senior apartments are designed to meet all your needs. Every person and their situation is a little different. You may want that extra home office to pursue your hobbies or interests. Perhaps you enjoy having family or friends over and need a guest room. Within a retirement community, various apartment sizes can accommodate your specific situation and needs. And you can bring your furniture and home décor with you. Schedule a tour of the retirement community you are interested in. While you are there, ask for tools and options available to envision how your furniture could look and fit into the various home sizes in the community. Living in the perfect home size can save you a lot of time and energy in cleaning, care and upkeep of the place.
Right now, you may be able to walk upstairs to your bedroom without much difficulty. Still, as life continues and you may become less mobile, you might find yourself wishing that you didn’t have those stairs to climb, or that back doorstep to cross. There may also be times in life when a wheelchair is required as you recover from various conditions. Or you or your spouse may need the use of other walking assistance devices at some point in your lives. In your senior community, you’ll find that doorways, showers and hallways are specially designed with these situations in mind. Instead of stairs, you’ll find a floor plan that makes your life easier and more comfortable.
The perfect kitchen. Retirement and senior living communities often provide their residents with restaurants and coffee shops to create opportunities for socialization as well as help ease the daily tasks of cooking, grocery shopping and meal prep. But if you enjoy preparing a meal once in a while or baking those holiday cookies, you’ll find just the right sized kitchen. Reliable appliances, a spot for the coffee maker so you can enjoy your morning cup of espresso out on the patio or balcony, and even a spot for the kitchen table. You’ll be able to invite the grandkids over for lunch, or even host whole dinner parties for your new neighbors!
A spot outdoors. Your retirement community will likely take care of all your outdoor maintenance needs, creating a beautiful neighborhood for you to enjoy without doing any of the work. You won’t need to stress about spring and summer time pruning and keeping the yard in perfect condition. If gardening is still fun, choose a senior home with a patio or balcony where you can still have your own private little space to grow your favorite flowers or enjoy a little herb garden. It’s the time to enjoy this season of life and have more time for the important things in life – like spending time with family and friends.
Location. Since your new home will be in a specially planned retirement community, you won’t have to worry about going very far for just about anything. A senior community can provide you with tons of options to socialize or exercise. You may have a selection of restaurants, coffee shops or a small store. Transportation may be provided if you love to shop in town and prefer not to drive, or have lost the ability to drive. Your neighbors will become your best friends and since you’ll likely find yourself in a neighborhood of likeminded people, your friends won’t be too far away either. Of course, your dog will love to social with some doggy friends at the community dog park!
As you plan your retirement home, be sure to check out all of the options available to you. Schedule a tour to find out how a senior community can bring you the comfort you deserve. Life Plan communities also offer the additional benefit of providing the care you need for an entire lifetime. Whether you are still active or already in need of supportive care services. And while assisted living or memory care services may eventually be needed, you will be able to live as independently and fully as possible every step of the way. Plus, you’ll have your own senior luxury apartment to call home!