View of canoes at the edge of a scenic lake in mid-autumn in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania

Looking for a new construction home in a picturesque community? You may want to take a look at Central Pennsylvania.

Big city living isn’t for everyone, including retirees who are ready to transition to a slower pace of life. In the Mid-Atlantic, Central Pennsylvania offers a mix of tranquil suburbs, rural landscapes, and medium-sized cities like Lancaster and Harrisburg.

55places.com shows 30 active adult communities in this area, and 17 of them offer new construction with homes for sale. This area can be an affordable option for active adults, as Pennsylvania is a retirement-friendly state. The cost of living here is lower than the surrounding states, and retirement income—including IRAs, 401(k)s, Social Security, and pensions—is tax-exempt. The state’s income tax rate is a flat 3.07 percent, and the sales tax is 6 percent (groceries, most clothing, pharmaceutical drugs, and residential heating fuels are exempt).

Central Pennsylvania also has top hospitals like Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and PinnacleHealth Hospitals in Harrisburg, countless golf courses, and many scenic destinations like Amish Country and the Lehigh Valley.

Here are four Central Pennsylvania 55+ active adult neighborhoods that offer new construction homes.

Amblebrook - Straban Township, PA

Low $300s

With a population of around 5,000, the Gettysburg suburb of Straban Township is a peaceful place for active adults to retire. Builder Henley Corbelis is developing this 800-acre property of 2,000 new single-family homes about five miles outside of Gettysburg Military Park. The natural setting has parks, lakes, trails, streams, and woods; homeowners will be able to go fishing on the grounds.

Amblebrook’s homes are being built in the traditional Farmhouse and Craftsman architecture styles, with detached and single-family models. The community will focus on farm-to-table living, and it will have a vibrant Town Center where neighbors can enjoy the farm stand, bar and grill, and indoor fitness center.

Learn more information about Amblebrook here.

Alden Place - Lebanon, PA

Low $200s - High $400s

If you’re not familiar with Lebanon, it’s about 20 miles north of Lancaster, and it offers six active adult communities, including Alden Place. This must-see neighborhood will have 505 new and resale attached and single-family homes upon completion by Alden Homes, who began developing the property in 2009.

There are over 20 floor plans with eight attached and 13 single-family models. These range from 1,449 up to 2,505 square feet with one to three bedrooms, two to three-and-a-half bathrooms, and attached two-car garages. Some of these tasteful homes have options like dens, covered porches, breakfast nooks, and outdoor terraces.

Many of the resort-like amenities are at the Alden Club, the 17,000-square-foot clubhouse. Here, you'll find an indoor pool, an exercise room, a café, a beauty salon, a ballroom, and a catering kitchen. The property also has walking and biking trails plus a fishing and canoeing lake. Activities like exercise classes, shopping trips, yoga, and crafts groups also keep everyone busy and connected.

Downtown Lebanon has plenty of doctor's offices, dentists, pharmacies, grocery stores, and shops as well as WellSpan Good Samaritan. The Lebanon Farmers Market is a great place to buy produce and gourmet goodies, and historic Union Canal Tunnel Park is on the outskirts of town.

Learn more information about Alden Place here.

Carmella - Mechanicsburg, PA

High $200s - Low $300s

Moving west past Harrisburg, we find Carmella, a gracious 55+ neighborhood slated for 190 new and resale attached homes. There are seven low-maintenance models sized from 1,513 to 2,566 square feet with two to three bedrooms, two to two-and-half baths, and attached two-car garages. These carriage homes are offered in duplex and triplex styles, all with first-floor master suites. Upgrades may include great rooms, maple cabinets, granite countertops, fireplaces, hardwood floors, and stainless steel appliances.

Carmella’s elegant clubhouse has an exercise room, gathering rooms, a kitchen and bar area, and an outdoor pool and patio. Popular neighborhood activities include Wii bowling, the Doggie Parade, Tai Chi, and holiday events.

This lovely community is only about three miles north of downtown, and close to everything else that active adults need. Drive a few miles north and you'll find restaurants, a Kohl’s, a Walmart Superstore, a Sam’s Club, a Starbucks, and a Wegmans. And in their spare time, residents like to head over to the Farmers' Flea Market or play the championship course at Rich Valley Golf.

Learn more information about Carmella here.

The Paddock at Equine Meadows - Red Lion, PA

Mid $100s - High $200s

Located about eight miles outside of York, Pennsylvania, The Paddock at Equine Meadows is an affordable retirement community that will have 174 new and resale attached homes when work is completed by Bentzel Construction. The seven floor plans are sized from 1,310 to 3,000 square feet with two or three bedrooms, two to three-and-a-half baths, and attached two-car garages. Standard features include luxury kitchen appliances, maintenance-free vinyl siding, and porches; upgrades include sunrooms, whirlpool tubs, hardwood floors, and fireplaces.

The welcoming community clubhouse has gathering rooms, an exercise room, and a comfortable patio, while the property has parks, natural space, and walking trails. There’s also a long list of clubs and activities, like line dancing, Aqua Fit, community dinners, a singing group, and Texas hold ‘em tournaments. Red Lion is a small city outside of York, a thriving mid-sized city that's home to York College, WellSpan York Hospital, and every type of shop and service you can think of.

Learn more information about The Paddock at Equine Meadows here.