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Old 09-14-2015, 08:18 PM   #21
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I for one had never wanted to live in a community where everyone was like me, age, profession, race, interests, background, whatever. I have always gotten more pleasure from being with different and interesting people than from others exactly like me. Hey, if I want to be with me, I have that already, me.

I remember decades ago, as a young professional, with my own business, working from home, the real estate agent told us, we would feel comfortable here, everyone was like me. That was exactly the wrong thing to say. We specifically told the next real estate agent, now this was 25 years ago, we wanted a neighborhood where people were different, young, old, different backgrounds, etc.

So now, I am older, but nothing about this has changed for me. I like interesting different folks of all ages. I find that no matter how different we are, age, from different cultures, backgrounds, politics, race, religion, whatever, I find a great deal of common ideals, and have some interesting stories to share.
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Old 09-14-2015, 08:36 PM   #22
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I can see the appeal of the "modern" retirement communities for a lot of people. The coolest, smartest, funniest couple we know are avid pickleball players and love it. They always laugh when they say the name.
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Old 09-14-2015, 08:55 PM   #23
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I like living in a 55+ community which is the same as a "retirement" community. 55 isn't that old for a retiree, so there are plenty of active folks. It's relatively quiet and laid back, no work day commuters or school buses/car pools.
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Old 09-14-2015, 11:41 PM   #24
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I still haven't figured out why we need to move to a "retirement community".
Different strokes for different folks.

I am single and child-free. Around age 75 or so I will move into an affordable CCRC 30 miles from my current home. I currently live in a vibrant university community, and the CCRC is located in another active university community. If there were a similar, affordable CCRC in my current town I would move in there, but alas there is not. CCRC residents are heavily involved in volunteer activities in the broader community, including in the elementary schools, which appeals to me. The university down the road offers courses to residents through the OLLI program.

The CCRC also offers many classes and activities onsite, as well as hiking and biking clubs, and lots of cultural excursions, etc. You can take it or leave it - no one is forced to participate.

Residents must move into the "independent living" residences of the CCRC to start with, and if additional levels of care are eventually needed, it's all available in one location. No need to move again if there is a need for assisted living services, or memory care services, or god forbid the onset on alzheimer's. It is affiliated with a top-notch local hospital located 5 miles from its location. Some limited health care is available onsite, and if I become more decrepit down the road (!) transportation is provided wherever it is needed.

In the meantime, there is no requirement that residents remain on the grounds of the CCRC - they are still free to roam about in the greater community at any time!

For 30 years I have found all the diversity I need in my university community, and I know the same will be true of the new location. However, I also look forward to living in an age-restricted community when I reach my mid-70's. Grandchildren are permitted to visit for short periods, and that will be delightful - I can look forward to other people's grandchildren arriving, and then look forward just as much to their departure after a suitable interval!

I have very close relationships with some younger relatives (extended family) in my current town, but as I age, and possibly fall into the aforementioned state of decrepitude, I do not want them to feel in any way responsible for my care. They are the kind of young(er) folks who would voluntarily take on the burden of care for an older relative (I've seen them do it with their in-laws) and that is not their job. Mind you, I have extracted promises from them to "Come and Visit Me in The Home In My Declining Years" - we laugh about it - but that's as far as it goes!

I have made it clear to them that I will be financially independent, and have all my medical and other needs taken care of in the CCRC community.

I like the idea of writing one check a month, and having everything taken care of. No shoveling, no yard work, no dealing with replacing appliances and cleaning gutters and so on. Heck, I'll be living the Life of Riley when I move in there - better than I live now. I don't have my own pool now, but there's a nice big one at the CCRC. And two dining rooms if I'm too lazy too cook. And an onsite fitness center, so no excuse not to stay fit.

I look at the CCRC as a gift I am giving to myself and to my younger family members. We tend to be very pragmatic and also extremely long-lived. Many family members live into their late 90's, and a couple made it past 100. If I never need the nursing care at the CCRC, that's fine. But I will rest easy knowing it's there in a heartbeat if I do need it, and so will my family members.
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Old 09-15-2015, 08:55 AM   #25
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I admit that I don't feel a burning need for shuffleboard here.
From the rumors I've heard about these senior communities, quite a few folks have a "burning" need, and I'm not talking shuffleboard...

Regardless of any positives or negatives, my housing costs would rise dramatically if I moved into one of the Del Webb/Sun City-type communities, so it's a non-starter.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:26 AM   #26
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From the rumors I've heard about these senior communities, quite a few folks a "burning" need, and I'm not talking shuffleboard...
Oh lovely, living in Peyton Place? Ewww. Not my cup of tea.

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Regardless of any positives or negatives, my housing costs would rise dramatically if I moved into one of the Del Webb/Sun City-type communities, so it's a non-starter.
Even if I could handle the costs, I'm not sure that I could handle all the socializing. Most of the so-called "advantages" of living in a community like that, are things that INTJ's like F and me would be trying to avoid. Clubs? Parties? Organized activities? Block parties? AAAGH

Most people in our neighborhood are older than 55, even though it is not a 55+ community. There isn't much turnover, and most new neighbors tend to be older than 55, too (like me). A few are younger but not many. That's good enough for us.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:26 AM   #27
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My in-laws live at Robson Ranch in North Texas. They absolutely love it there. We've visited many times and every time we leave, DW and I have a brief discussion about moving there as a downsize option. I'm really torn. On one hand, everything seems great... the houses, people, facilities, activities, clubs, etc. We enjoy visiting there and also the nearby university town, which is quite an interesting place. On the other hand, I get this creepy feeling like in the movie Stepford Wives. Everything is almost disturbingly idyllic. I also detest the idea of an HOA. The in-laws have a neighbor who repeatedly reports them if a couple weeds pop up in their flower beds. The same neighbor complains every time they BBQ because the smoke drifts over to her patio. Not sure I'm wired to live that close to other people.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:37 AM   #28
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I like living in a 55+ community which is the same as a "retirement" community. 55 isn't that old for a retiree, so there are plenty of active folks. It's relatively quiet and laid back, no work day commuters or school buses/car pools.

The 55+ is definitely something that would appeal to me in about 10 years at age 60. I have not explored too in depth, but have kind of mentally envisioned a balance between "young and old" retirees. However many of the complaints I have read always describe mostly communities of people 70 and over.
Did you actively research to find a balanced population community?
I would like a balanced one, but I am not unsettled by being around "old people". Heck I golf weekly with my neighbor who is 86 and still a very good golfer.


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Old 09-15-2015, 09:42 AM   #29
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This is such a common phenomenon that there really should be a word for it.
How about "roldsters", as in "really old oldsters". Then there's "foldsters", as in "frickin' curmudgeonly oldsters". Put the two together and you have "refoldsters".

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Old 09-15-2015, 09:43 AM   #30
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Of all the issues raised by others on this (and similar) threads, it is this that bothers me the most. Right now, my home and yard create distance and privacy. However, all these retirement places are so cramped, and everyone is jammed together on their tiny lots.

So you either have to leave the place entirely, or go to one of the on-site recreation facilities where you see all the same people day after day. Yes, I want company, but I don't want to have to go hide in my bungalow in order to get away from them. I am like Bilbo, when he retired to Rivendell: "There are elves...when you want them."

Bottom line, although I am a good and reliable person, and a kind one, I am also the type who is inclined to poke fun at sacred cows (e.g. making fun of the name "pickleball"). And once you've dared to poke fun at pickleball, you are probably persona non grata at any and all retirement places forever and ever. In short, I'm simply not everyone's cup of tea, nor do I want to have to exert the mental effort to BE everyone's cup of tea (had to do enough of that at work).

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Not sure I'm wired to live that close to other people.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:54 AM   #31
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Socializing is not required even if you live in one of these communities.

The problem with a large home lot providing privacy is there is a lot of maintenance required, something that becomes more of a hassle as you age.
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Old 09-15-2015, 10:44 AM   #32
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I look at the CCRC as a gift I am giving to myself and to my younger family members. We tend to be very pragmatic and also extremely long-lived. Many family members live into their late 90's, and a couple made it past 100. If I never need the nursing care at the CCRC, that's fine. But I will rest easy knowing it's there in a heartbeat if I do need it, and so will my family members.
That's where I'll probably be headed when I no longer want the upkeep and maintenance issues of a house. I'm only 62 so it should be many years down the road. My son and DIL live 3 hours away. They have one child and are hoping for one or two more, so I'd probably move to a CCRC in their area. That way I'll be easy to visit but not living in their spare bedroom.
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Old 09-15-2015, 11:20 AM   #33
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My consideration is different, I suppose. I might enjoy having things going on that I could participate in at will. But, the honest truth is that I bore easily and others bore of me easily. I am not particularly adept at socialization and tend to end up observing others partaking of socialization. The person I imagine enjoying a over 55 community is probably not the real me.
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Old 09-15-2015, 03:29 PM   #34
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I love my 55+ community. I've made friends and there is always something to do, including no green fee golf included in my $90/ month HOA fee. I have just as much privacy / space as my prior home, plus I am on green space. I do not miss the screaming kids from my old neighborhood, I do not miss idiots screeching down the roads. I am one of the youngest residents (DH is age qualified, I am only 52). I am also less active than many of the older residents. I look forward to living here until it is time for me to move to a CCRC.
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Old 09-15-2015, 04:07 PM   #35
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The people in our 55+ community have a lot of social activities going when most of them are hear in the late fall/winter/early spring months. Less hectic over the hotter months, but still increasingly active as more and more folks live here year around.

I'm actually amazed at the amount of activities and the enthusiasm with which people participate. It's pretty spontaneous too - someone comes up with an idea and people join in, and if popular it becomes a regular activity after a while with a regular person doing the organizing for a specific activity for a season, and passing on to someone else when they are ready to move on.

We don't participate in any of it. We used to go occasionally, but community dinners where you bring a dish get old (for me) really quick. Yet most of my neighbors enthusiastically participate. Same with organized weekly and monthly restaurant outings - many love to go out to eat together regularly. Not for me either.

I occasionally invite the community to participate in something that interests me - such as a "butterfly garden" open house (well, garden) that I hold during butterfly season. Have a dozen folks show up for an hour - good enough for me. I've done a few plant walks over the years, and occasionally remind folks when the hummingbirds are coming through. We take a neighbor or two birding now and then - the beginning birders that haven't experienced the local hot spots yet.

But the general level of happiness, energy, and good feeling between neighbors who get to know each other pretty well, does rub off on me. I appreciate that part.

No one ever questions our level of participation. Neighbors know we have interests outside the community.
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Old 09-15-2015, 04:39 PM   #36
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So, I'm already there... Living in Liberty Village in Peru. Love every part of it.

To save time, "What Calico said"...

We really like our community. In our case, after living in an age restricted community (over 55) for more than 15 years, we moved to our CCRC in 2004... this is a slow down, but as such, very much appreciated. Gone the go-go days of parties, shuffleboard, pool, classes, bowling, bocce, card games, music sessions , pot lucks, pontoon boat day trips, and dozens of other activities. Gone the wine tasting, karaoke, trips to Daytona or Cedar Key and the nights of going to the Villages for block parties.

It's a time for settling down, without the cares of maintenance, social activities responsibilities and general upkeep.

It's a feeling of safety... We live in a regular 1600 sf home, but can easily transition to an apartment, assisted living, nursing home or Alzheimer unit... all within our own comfortable community of people.

While retirement is a phase, within those years are changes. Not too put a too fine point on this, a big difference between the 55-65 age group, and the 75 to 85 age group. We've been in both, so some experience. Of course there are exceptions but our experience says most in our current age group are thankful for a slowdown.

Total independence comes with risk, as we age. Transitioning on a planned schedule, to a CCRC is easier to do when we're healthy. Too often, the move is not scheduled, but forced, as in a broken hip, or other debilitating health problems. At that point, integrating into another community... with a handicap that requires care, is difficult.

Of course, looking into the future is not a given, but neither are there any guarantees that wishes become reality. When comparing your own future to those that are discussed on ER, the hope is for independence at age 88... the reality may be quite different. Even at age 70, our outlook was for more activity... nearing 80, more subdued. Neither DW nor I have ever regretted our move to Liberty Village.

For anyone who may not be familiar with a full service CCRC, a search for Liberty Village will bring up many of the 17 different communities in the parent organization. Typical of many CCRC's here's a FAQ of what you might expect with regard to lifestyle, facilities, rules and regulations as well as an overview of costs. Some of the details that aren't obvious from a quick visit to a facility.
Villas, Apartments, Assisted Living, and Nursing Home.

http://www.simplythefinest.net/faqs.php

Just an opinion...we often look to our parents, or older friends or relatives as a guideline or a possible model for our own future. At the same time, we must be mindful of statistics... somewhere in between, a decision that can be made for the later years.
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Old 09-15-2015, 08:16 PM   #37
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......It's a time for settling down, without the cares of maintenance, social activities responsibilities and general upkeep......

....Total independence comes with risk, as we age. Transitioning on a planned schedule, to a CCRC is easier to do when we're healthy. Too often, the move is not scheduled, but forced, as in a broken hip, or other debilitating health problems. At that point, integrating into another community... with a handicap that requires care, is difficult.....

...Just an opinion...we often look to our parents, or older friends or relatives as a guideline or a possible model for our own future. At the same time, we must be mindful of statistics... somewhere in between, a decision that can be made for the later years.
This sums it up for me. I have seen one elderly relative after another (including my own father) put off making a decision until a health crisis forced the situation, and I refuse to put myself in that position, or to put that burden on my younger relatives. I have seen one relative after another scrambling to find a decent, affordable care community for a parent or in-law in the midst of a health crisis. On top of everything else, the younger family members are often beating themselves up with guilt. All of this can be avoided with proper planning.

I have been independent my entire life, and I would rather be proactive, choose my own CCRC, and move in while I still have all (or almost all, depending on whom you ask) my marbles.

Then, if my marbles slowing drift away over the years, so be it. I will be in the place I chose for myself.
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Old 09-15-2015, 08:21 PM   #38
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That's where I'll probably be headed when I no longer want the upkeep and maintenance issues of a house. I'm only 62 so it should be many years down the road. My son and DIL live 3 hours away. They have one child and are hoping for one or two more, so I'd probably move to a CCRC in their area. That way I'll be easy to visit but not living in their spare bedroom.
Bingo!
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Old 09-15-2015, 11:48 PM   #39
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I really appreciate all the insights into actual life in a 55+ community. I know personally only one person who is in one, it's far away from me, and they just moved in.

Keep the 55+ community experiences coming!
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Old 09-16-2015, 05:55 AM   #40
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Neither did I... until too many changes occurred. We bought the present house, lived here many years now, figured to retire in-place. But there are changes in the neighborhood. Worst is the neighbor on one side, we have had to endure three generations of poor parenting with them, and the yard is hoarded. More "grandkids" coming via all sorts of low-moral engagements. The house is like a low-budget motel. Also, I find myself thinking "do I want to be doing this 10 years from now?"

I must live two houses down from you: it seems we share a neighbor! 😆 While that may be a contributing factor to get us to move, my experience at the few 55+ communities we've visited is that they really should be called 70+ communities, and DW and I (who bookend 60) would not feel comfortable there right now. But as usual, Imoldernu's experience and perspective is of interest, and we don't rule out a similar path...just not yet.
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