City Retirement vs. Suburban Retirement

There are many differences between retiring in a city versus a suburb.
There are many differences between retiring in a city than a suburb.
There are many differences between retiring in a city versus a suburb.

When it comes to choosing your ideal retirement location, you’ll probably be flooded with options. Do you choose a suburban environment for more peace, space, and tranquility? Do you go with a city setting that puts you close to exciting attractions and entertainment as well as mass transit options? If you’re debating on whether to retire in the city or suburbs, it’s important to get all of the necessary information to suit your lifestyle needs as well as help you make your final decision.

A Legacy of Suburban Communities

Sun City Arizona was the first 55+ community in the country and was built in 1960 by Del Webb. It was designed to be a self-contained subdivision and resemble a vacation-style resort. Developed in a large, rural area outside of Phoenix, Sun City Arizona was built around a lavish golf course and several clubhouses. In the coming years, it became the standard blueprint for a majority of active adult communities that followed.

The traditional model of retirement communities included relatively isolated rural environments where residents had all of their amenities within the community, but they did have to drive outside of their gated communities to get to daily conveniences and attractions. These suburban settings were thought of as ideal for retirees because they had the space, peace, and amenities within their secluded gated enclaves.

Because of the success of Sun City Arizona, a majority of active adult communities have been built in rural locations that resemble suburban environments. Most homes are architecturally and stylistically similar in these 55+ communities, which is made possible through the governance of a homeowners’ association, which is also common in suburban communities.

Pros and Cons of City Living

Developers built these age-restricted communities in suburban locations because they wanted to provide retirees with a slower pace of life that was far from the hustle and bustle of city life. But new trends have shown that some retirees prefer to retire in the city because they want to be close to family and friends or are still working during retirement and they require access to public transportation options.

While some retirees may continue to work throughout their Golden Years, others just want to enjoy a more active lifestyle. Instead of slowing down, active adults want to experience a more vibrant life because they are no longer tied down to a 9-to-5 job or busy raising children. As empty-nesters, they want to downsize their large, suburban home and explore urban city centers that offer a diverse environment as well as a variety of shopping, dining, entertainment, attractions, and social events that are all within walking distance. Another bonus to city living is the easy access to medical facilities, cultural amenities like museums, libraries, and public parks.

Although city retirement may be more fun and exciting for active adults, it does have its setbacks. For one, retiring in a city often isn’t cheap. Retirees may end up paying more money for a smaller home due to its urban location. In a suburban retirement, retirees can typically find more reasonably priced homes that offer a bit more square footage and private outdoor space like backyards and patios.

Those seeking a more urban retirement have no shortage of 55+ communities to choose from. Hill Country Retreat, developed by Del Webb, is located within the San Antonio city limits and provides easy access to the world-class attractions found in this Central Texas city. Want to retire near the heart of American history? The Arbours at Eagle Pointe is an active adult community in Northeast Philadelphia. Las Vegas has no fewer than ten communities within its borders, including Siena, Sun City Summerlin, and Regency at Summerlin.

The Baby Boomer generation is a dynamic one and they have different ideas about what makes a perfect retirement location. Not all retirees want to spend their Golden Years playing golf or pickleball – some prefer walking to museums and art galleries whenever they wish. Retirees who have lived as city dwellers in the past may want to retire in a big city because they are more comfortable with the urban environment, while other retirees may want to escape the noise and activity and settle in a quiet, suburban active adult community where they can enjoy a more relaxed pace of life.

Whether Boomers choose a city retirement or suburban retirement, they are sure to find the perfect setting that suits their lifestyles with the amenities and services found in most communities.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
Details here.

Share this post:

We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

Call us to speak with a customer service representative.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting [email protected] Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The Best Places to Snowbird in 2021

We’ve gathered 25 of the best places for snowbirds, including cities in Florida, Arizona, California, Texas, South Carolina, and Nevada. For each entry, we’ve also provided a list of recommended 55+ communities in the area. If you’re ready to find your own winter retreat this season, here are some of the best places to consider.

A senior couple takes a hike in a low-humidity state they chose for their retirement.

Retirement: What Are the Top 5 States With the Lowest Humidity?

There are many factors in deciding where to retire, and the weather can be one of them. Luckily, many of the states with nice weather also offer additional benefits for people over 60 and have several exciting active adult communities. Here are the four best states for a low-humidity retirement.

Lake view during autumn at dusk of Table Rock Mountain in Pickens, South Carolina.

5 Reasons To Consider a South Carolina Retirement

What does South Carolina have to offer active adults? A selection of over 80 active adult communities is just the beginning. These five reasons to consider a South Carolina retirement just might convince you that this southern coastal state has everything you’re looking for in a 55+ community.

The Best Places to Retire in South Carolina

South Carolina is known for having some of the best golf courses in the country, but that’s not all it has to offer active adults. The state has a rich history and culture, a wide selection of entertainment and recreation, and miles of beaches and coastal living.

North Carolina vs. South Carolina

The Carolinas are a power couple when it comes to maintaining an active lifestyle in an amazing climate, but they’re separated by more than just a border. A side-by-side comparison of the two can quickly show which is better for you when it comes to your interests and needs.

Exterior view of a model home at Del Webb Carolina Gardens, Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina on a sunny day.

55+ Communities With New Homes for Sale Near Raleigh

If you’re in the market for a new construction home in Raleigh, North Carolina there are plenty of options to consider. We’ve put together a list to help you start your search for the perfect neighborhood with new homes.

A woman playing pickleball in her 55+ community.

Raleigh Area 55+ Communities Big on Pickleball

With the pickleball’s rising popularity, many active adult communities across the country have taken heed and added pickleball courts to their lists of amenities. And, the Raleigh-Durham area–which is home to 40 active adult communities–is no different.

About 55places

We’re changing the way people 55 and older are searching for their perfect next place. With a national network of hand-selected real estate experts, plus comprehensive information, unbiased content, and on-the-go insight about thousands of communities across the country, we’re a trusted resource paving the way from here to home. Whether you’re interested in a low-maintenance single-level residence, an active lifestyle or age-qualified community, an intimate enclave, or anything in between, we can help you make your next move the best one yet.

Scroll to Top