Active adults that are planning to set down roots in south central Pennsylvania have a lot to think about if they are deciding between Lebanon and Reading. These two towns are about 30 miles apart from one another, with access to recreational and cultural opportunities, plus all of the modern conveniences. Since they are in the same region of the state, the two have much in common. Looking closer though, there are distinctive differences that can be discerned.
First of all, they are in two separate counties. Lebanon is the county seat of Lebanon Count, while Reading is central to Berks County. Reading has a much larger population, with around 88,000 residents, while Lebanon has about 25,000 These basic facts can be your starting point, but when it comes down to choosing between them for retirement, specific details will also matter.
Lebanon in a Nutshell
Lebanon is easily accessible from Interstate 81, Interstate 78, and the Pennsylvania Turnpike, and was named the second least stressful city in the country by Sperling’s BestPlaces.net. Founded in 1740, its historic charm attracts homebuyers and tourists of all ages.
Residents can take advantage of beautiful Coleman Memorial Park, a public park and forest which offers miles of nature trails, wildlife sightings, and the historic Homestead Carriage House. Other attractions include nine other parks, a community pool, the Lebanon Farmers Market, Lebanon Community Theatre, and a thriving public library. Lebanon’s Downtown district also hosts special events throughout the year, which are widely attended.
Lebanon also scored well for its small-town feel, convenient location near Harrisburg, and lower-than-average cost of living. Area hospitals like Wellspan Good Samaritan Hospital and Frederick Memorial Hospital provide medical care. Many of the main shopping complexes are near Route 422. Lebanon County is also dotted with golf courses, including Iron Valley, Royal Oaks, and Fairview.
Lebanon Active Adult Communities
There are five 55+ neighborhoods in Lebanon proper, with prices ranging from the low $100s to the low $400s. The majority are on the smaller side, so this combined with the town’s desirability can mean the number of available homes can be somewhat limited.
58 attached resale homes
Located right next to Coleman Memorial Park
113 attached and single-family homes
Private fishing lake
198 new single-family homes
First-floor master suites
505 attached and single family homes
88 new and resale single family homes
Tranquil, park-like setting
Reading in a Nutshell
Reading’s forested hills and expansive valleys create a picturesque setting for homeowners to work, play, and relax. The main routes leading here include Interstate 80, Interstate 95, and the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
A historical industrial town, it also has a lower-than-average cost of living and is about an hour away from Allentown and Philadelphia. Berks County has been coined the “Americana Region,” because of his rich cultural history that started with the Reading Railroad in the early 1900s. Festivals like the Kutztown Folk Festival and Reading Liederkranz Oktoberfest celebrate this heritage.
Reading is also known for its museums and theaters like the Miller Center for the Arts, Santander Performing Arts Center, and Goggle Works, an eclectic community arts center. There are also area farmers markets, covered bridges, golf courses, and the popular Vanity Fair outlet shopping center. Local medical centers include Penn State Health’s St. Joseph Medical Center, and Reading Hospital.
Reading Active Adult Communities
The Reading area has four active adult communities, which are all small sized and affordably priced.
92 resale single-family homes
142 new and resale ranch-style homes
First-floor master suite
110 attached new and resale homes
117 new and resale single-family homes
Peaceful setting nine miles from Reading