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Retirement communities often get a bad rap—and that’s usually because they get wrongfully lumped into assisted care facilities. Retirement communities are actually just communities where senior citizens (who sometimes share something in common) move to live out their golden years. And there are really interesting things about them that many people don’t realize. Here are five things you didn’t know about retirement communities.
They’re Beautiful and Heavily Guarded
Most retirement communities are often gated and heavily guarded. This doesn’t mean they are trying to keep their residents in, but instead are trying to provide the best security for them! For the most part, these communities are often very well-kept suburban-type residential communities.
They Hold Events
Retirement communities are specifically designed to provide a great community for seniors after retiring. Many seniors can’t or don’t want to travel far for entertainment, which is why these communities often host events and entertainment for them. Restaurants, golf courses, theaters—these are all just some of the great things you can find in a retirement community.
They Aren’t Just For Being Taken Care Of
Like mentioned above, a common misconception of retirement communities is that they are assisted living facilities—with nurses and staff intended to help medically. In reality, not everyone in a retirement community needs extra help. (Although that help is there in case any residents ever do need extra help.) Most seniors move into retirement communities simply for the community, the extra security, and other perks that they offer.
They Often Host Like Minds
Like-minded individuals often choose to live together in communities. There are a lot of scenarios in which retirees who worked in similar fields (like mail carriers) or maintain similar interests gather together in retirement communities. When you’re looking for the right place to spend your retirement, be sure to inquire about the residents themselves and the lines of work they come from or their interests. If you’re a golf lover, moving into a community with a golf course and other golf fanatics can make your time there more enjoyable.
They Can be Pricey
Retirement communities can lay anywhere on the financial spectrum: either they’re really pricey or they’re not. In most cases, however, these communities cost more than a standard mortgage or rent. Most retirees own their own home before moving into a retirement community and have already paid them off, so the costs of living in a retirement community can be quite a shock. In order to afford the retirement community you’ve got your heart set on, you can make a number of decisions. You can sell your home and use the funds to support your life in your new community. You can also lease or rent your home in order to still maintain ownership but gain extra income while you are not living in it. You can also sell a life insurance policy in a life settlement. If you have an unwanted or unneeded life insurance policy, you may consider selling for a sum of money that can be used to afford living in the retirement community.
If you have a life insurance policy that you no longer need or want, talk with your financial advisor about selling it for retirement funds. To see if you qualify, use our Qualification Calculator!