If you are at or near retirement age, chances are high that you’ve considered moving to an active adult community. It could be that your current home is too big or too far away from your kids and grandkids. Or maybe you’re interested in leaving snow and rain for sunny skies. You may also be tempted by all those fun amenities you’ve heard about. This post looks at the advantages and disadvantages of living in an active adult community.
Also known as 55+ communities, an active adult community is a neighborhood designed specifically for people over age 55. Some people also think of them as retirement communities, but most have some residents who are still working.
The name “active adult” is usually very apt, as most of these neighborhoods offer loads of activities. Amenities typically include:
Some 55+ communities are like tiny cities, with bars and restaurants, retail shopping, healthcare services, and more.
Most active adult communities have age restrictions requiring at least one resident to be over the age of 55. Rules vary according to the neighborhood’s homeowner’s association (HOA) or management company. In some cases, 100 percent of the residents must be over age 55. Most 55+ neighborhoods only require 80 percent, though, to make allowances for younger spouses.
Children under the age of 18 are rarely allowed full-time residence in an active adult community. However, most allow minors to visit or stay with residents for up to 60 days per year. These allowances vary according to the management company. If you have college-age children who still spend holidays at home, or grandchildren who visit frequently, ask about these limitations.
Active adult communities may also have guidelines around income, financial resources, and criminal history.
Advantages and disadvantages are relative terms. For example, one person may love the 55+ aspect while someone else considers that the number one drawback. In general, though, the following are considered the advantages of living in a 55+ community.
Finally, many people choose active adult communities because it’s easy to make friends and stay active, even after they retire or their children move away. Seniors are often prone to isolation. But in a 55+ neighborhood, you’re surrounded by people your own age, with many opportunities to connect over shared interests and make new friends.
The majority of Americans choose to remain in the home they had before they retired. Their reasons are many, but here are some of the most common:
Finally, some people just aren’t interested in all of the amenities that make up an active adult community. If you don’t golf or swim, aren’t interested in making friends or learning a new hobby, the social aspects of one of these neighborhoods probably doesn’t appeal to you.
If you’re interested in learning more about active adult communities, the internet makes it easy. You’ll find loads of options, particularly in warm weather states like Arizona, California, Florida, Texas, and Nevada. But with their rising popularity, you now find 55+ neighborhoods across the country.
Start by searching online to compare amenities – not all active adult communities are created equal. Then, take the time to visit your favorites. You may find that “community park” is code for a single picnic table under a tree. It’s well worth the time to tour the neighborhood and even talk to a few residents to see what it’s like to live there.
Some communities even allow prospective residents to spend a night or two (for a fee similar to a hotel reservation). You’ll stay in a fully furnished home and get complete access to all of the amenities. You also enjoy one-on-one time with the community’s lifestyle director, who ensures you understand all of your options.
After retiring from a career as an executive travel counselor in 2006, Donna Frederick embarked on a second career as a licensed insurance agent. During that first year, many clients told Donna how overwhelmed they felt by Medicare, but that her assistance helped them finally understand the Medicare program. That experience inspired Donna to focus her efforts on educating her clients to ensure they fully understand their Medicare options. Today, Donna takes pride in providing outstanding customer service and going the extra mile to make sure each client knows all of their options and has a sound understanding of their Medicare plan, from costs to coverage and all points in between.
The MedicareUSA website is operated by HealthPlanOne, LLC a licensed health insurance agency based in Connecticut; in California d/b/a HPOne Insurance Agency, license #OF30784. HealthPlanOne, is a licensed and certified representative of Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO and PPFS organizations and stand-alone prescription drug plans with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any plan depends on contract renewal.
For a complete list of available plans please contact 1-800-MEDICARE (TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048), 24 hours a day/7 days a week or consult www.medicare.gov.
The purpose of this communication is the solicitation of insurance. Contact will be made by an insurance agent/producer or insurance company.
Medicare supplement plans are not connected with or endorsed by the U.S. Government or the federal Medicare program.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) does not review or approve Medicare Supplement plan information.
Other Pharmacies are available in the plans' networks.
Last Updated 12/21/2018