When Frank Sinatra famously promised that “the best is yet to come,” he helped to create the expectation for an entire generation that the golden years on the horizon would be their most enjoyable yet. Believed to be a time when the pressures to work long hours and provide for the family would ease, these years are expected to trade in the responsibility of looking after others and be replaced with the ability to take a few (read: many) relaxing and well-earned deep breaths.
Newly senior Americans, members of the baby boomer generation, are finally reaching this milestone in massive numbers, with about 10,000 per day crossing into retirement. In the next ten years, the entire generation will have finally set out into what are supposed to be the most enjoyable years of their lives.
As many seniors take their first step into these pinnacle years, however, they are realizing that this new lifestyle includes a new set of challenges that many didn’t foresee. These issues include everything from difficulty keeping up with maintenance around the house to more personal concerns regarding things like feeling safe and keeping an active and fulfilling social life.
Senior living retirement communities work to meet these challenges head-on and provide an environment where residents can truly thrive well into their later years. Here are some of the most significant benefits to senior living that make it an excellent choice you should consider while you begin to plan for what comes next in your life.
Don’t Sweat The Small Stuff
As seniors get older, the daily responsibilities needed to keep your home and property maintained and looking great can become a bit more of a burden. The lawn will still need to be mowed, driveways may require shoveling in winter, and the lightbulbs high up in the ceilings will eventually all need to be replaced. Retirement communities take care of these odds and ends for you with the hope that by saving you the time and potential risk of doing it yourself, you’ll be able to better focus on the more meaningful moments of your day.
Convenience You Can Get Used To
Retirement communities design their amenities with the residents in mind, and the good ones leave no stone unturned in their effort to ensure that seniors can continue accessing everything from parks and fitness centers to healthcare services without having to travel far. As the year’s progress, traveling long distances for these services can be intimidating and lead many to feel as if the effort isn’t worth the trouble. Senior living communities understand that additional time during the day isn’t as meaningful without the ability to enjoy your favorite activities, and work hard to make sure it’s residents don’t feel limited.2
Safety You Can Trust
As you reach retirement and beyond, it’s no secret that your strength and ability to defend yourself begin to feel a bit more limited. Unfortunately, the elderly are often the target of ill-doers who look to exploit this potential vulnerability and take advantage of seniors. Retirement communities realize this, and actively work to ensure that their residents are safe by doing everything from hiring security staff to keep a watchful eye and using gates and fences to keep potential trouble out. Knowing that the neighborhood is safe gives seniors the confidence to enjoy activities like taking an evening walk or leaving for a weekend getaway without having to fear for their safety.3
Reinvent Your Social Life
Having a vibrant and rewarding social life surrounded by friends is an integral part of the human experience at every stage of life. Unfortunately, as we get older, our ability to connect with others can prove to be more difficult. By living in a senior living community, you have the unique opportunity of being surrounded by people you can relate to and enjoy the company of. Keeping an active social life becomes more realistic when all of your friends are also your neighbors, and there are several entertainment options close by.4
Senior Living Doesn’t Have To Break The Bank
There’s no doubt that all of these amenities are valuable and can significantly increase how enjoyable and fulfilling the golden years can be. One concern that often accompanies the decision to consider a senior living community is the cost associated with committing to the option for the long term. It’s no secret that many retirement communities do come with a high price tag, with some costing as much as $6,000 per month, but there are a few things that you should consider. First, the price is close to all-inclusive and includes everything from insurance, utilities, and taxes, to meal plans, recreation, and even haircuts. Having all of your monthly expenses compiled into one easily paid bill can reduce the stress of trying to manage more complicated finances.
Additionally, there are several different options when it comes to retirement and senior living that can help reduce the cost while still offering a variety of valuable services. Independent living communities, for example, are varied and range widely in the number of amenities that are offered. Some seniors will require less assistance and desire a minimal structure regarding the schedule of possible activities; in these situations, monthly costs can be significantly cheaper.5
As with any important life choice and financial commitment, the most important thing to do is commit to doing the research and finding the situation that is best for you. Every day seniors are choosing retirement communities after deciding that, after a lifetime of hard work, the time has come to let someone else do the heavy lifting as they enjoy their golden years with more convenience and peace of mind. The best can truly be yet to come if you are a senior, but the time to commit to fully enjoying those years should start now.