Guest Contributor: This is a guest post from 55Places.com
Life after 55 should be anything but restricted; it should be invigorating, fun, and active. Post-retirement is a joyous time in your life when can reflect on your professional accomplishments and enjoy the finer things like fitness, relaxation, and treasured friendships. If you are looking to spend your golden years in a place that offers platinum amenities, consider the following menu of options to determine if an age-qualified community is right for you.
Community Association: The benefits of living in a community with a thriving homeowner’s association are endless. Most HOAs help set community standards and rules to protect the value of your home and the community. They also help fund new community amenities, groups, and activities. Be mindful of whether or not the communities you are touring have active HOAs. Without an HOA, the value of your new home could become subject to nearby eyesores like tall weeds and garbage in your neighbors’ yards.
Fitness: They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but we all know that conscious food choices alone won’t keep us healthy. Most active adult communities offer unique fitness amenities such as group fitness classes including Zumba, spin, Barr Method and Pilates; some even have lush 18-hole golf courses, professional-size tennis courts, and Olympic swimming pools. So whether you enjoy teeing off with your best friends or swimming laps in solitude, add fitness amenities to your list of must-haves. When touring communities, pay close attention to the fitness center amenities. Are the group fitness classes full? Are weeds growing through cracks in the tennis courts? Could the fairways use a little TLC? You’ll be surprised by what you’ll find when you pay attention to the little details.
Social Opportunities: Relocating to a new area is challenging. Whether you’re moving away from your grandchildren or retiring from a long-held job, finding new friends will make your experience in an active adult community that much richer. Be sure the communities you tour provide plenty of opportunities to interact with new neighbors and friends. It’s a good sign if the social gathering spaces include clubhouses, cafes and restaurants, and activity rooms are buzzing with excitement. This usually indicates that making new friends will be easy!
Floor Plans: Whether you plan to stay for five years or twenty, finding a community that offers a variety of homes and floor plans to choose from will ensure your comfort and safety for years to come. Many active adults choose to purchase smaller, single-story homes to eliminate upkeep. However, smaller may not be what you are looking for. When weighing the pros and cons of communities, pay close attention to the breadth of homes and floor plans available. Do they fit your needs and wants? Is there a large variety to choose from? Are the homes in good shape? If you can answer no to any of these questions, you might want to reconsider.
Touring an active adult community is exciting. Whether you are new to these types of communities or have lived in one for many years, when researching areas to call home, work with a professional real estate agent to protect you from potential real estate pitfalls, ensure that you find the perfect active adult community and the home of your dreams!