Archive: February 2010
Retirees on a budget may be surprised to learn that some fabulous active adult communities, in prime retirement locations, offer single-family homes for under $150,000. Florida, as the most popular retirement state, includes several budget-friendly active adult communities, as does the neighboring state of Georgia. Arizona, another popular retirement destination, has communities that won’t break the bank as well, including the very first of the modern-day active adult communities.
Retirees are often drawn to the sunny shores of southern coastal states such as California, Florida, and the Carolinas. With their warm weather, mild winters, and plentiful outdoor activities, these states are a natural fit for active adult communities. Yet not all retirees dream of life on a beach, or even within easy driving distance of an ocean shore. Within its coastal borders, the United States offers a diverse climate that includes spectacular mountains, dense forests, lush lakes, verdant valleys, arid deserts, and flat, open plains. Any of these locations may appeal to retirees, either for their own benefits or for their proximity to family and friends.
Fifty is the new 40, 60 is the new 50-- adults are living longer and leading more active lifestyles than ever before. This is partially a result of advances in healthcare, but it is also due to a better understanding of how lifestyle affects the body. When it comes to a person’s health, genetics play an important role. However, those who are predisposed to a certain condition, or already diagnosed with a disease, can reduce their risks and better manage their condition with simple lifestyle changes.
California and Florida are two of America’s most popular retirement locations. Both the Golden State and the Sunshine State are known for their sunny beaches, beautiful climates, and active lifestyles. Though they are located on opposite coasts, each state draws retirees for some very similar reasons. Climate is clearly one of the main draws for both of these locations. California provides many retirement settings including mountain, desert, beach, and vineyard locations. As a peninsula, Florida offers sunny beaches along both its ocean and gulf coasts, as well as lakeside living throughout the state.
In April 2009, Sun City Peachtree by Del Webb opened its new 45,000 square foot clubhouse, their largest amenity center in the southeast. Christened Club Peachtree, this spacious clubhouse offers residents an impressive variety of both indoor and outdoor amenities. Conveniently located 40 miles south of Atlanta, in Griffin, Georgia, Sun City Peachtree opened its doors in 2007, making it one of the regions newer active adult communities. In 2008, the Canongate Sun City Peachtree Golf Club, designed by Gary Stephenson, opened to rave reviews, further raising the expectations for Sun City’s awaited clubhouse. Though expectations were high, Del Webb easily exceeded those expectations with Club Peachtree’s abundance of amenities tailored to fit the needs of today’s active adults.
Wii Fit, and the newer Wii Fit Plus version of the game, is designed to help people have fun while getting fit. But is this innovative exercise program a good choice for active adults? When Nintendo released the Wii, its most recent game console, the company took a novel approach by targeting users of all ages. Kids, teens, young adults and even elderly users enjoy the Wii interactive games, particularly those that simulate sports such as bowling, boxing, or tennis. Though the console was expected to be popular with kids and teens, the Nintendo Wii gaming system has also been a hit at many active adult communities, such as Alegria in New Mexico and Victoria Gardens in Florida, where Wii social clubs have been formed.
It’s easy to dream about your ideal retirement location, but how do you know that the city you choose will match up to your fantasy? Travel brochures, movies and destination TV shows can make many locations look like paradise. Whether your dream is of sunny beaches, high desert, or majestic mountains, it’s important to take the time to research and visit an area before making it your new home. For retirees who dream of living in the arid or semi-arid climate of a desert, a dream destination is likely to be found in the American Southwest. The more southern Mojave, Sonoran and Chihuahuan Deserts have long summers with high temperatures and semi-tropical plant life, while the Grand Basin Desert has somewhat cooler temperatures.
When most people think of active adult retirement communities, they picture warm coastal regions, arid deserts, or lush mountain areas. Yet, not every active adult wants to move across the country to enjoy the many benefits of an active adult community. Understanding this, developers have begun designing communities in less typical locations. The Chicago area, though once an unlikely retirement destination, is now home to over a dozen thriving active adult communities. Why do active adults choose to stay in Chicago instead of retiring to Florida’s sandy beaches or California’s wine country? While the idea of a community with many amenities, activities, and social opportunities is often appealing to empty nesters and retirees, some may not like the idea of moving far away from their families and friends. Some of Chicago’s active adults, known as “fullbacks”, did make the move to a southern retirement home only to later return to Illinois when they realized how much they missed their previous hometown.