Surprise, Arizona Real Estate: Exploring the 55+ Communities

Sun Village was the first 55+ community in Surprise. It\'s also credited with the city\'s popular boom.

The city of Surprise is in the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan Area in Arizona. It’s 22 miles from Downtown Phoenix, and a 45-minute drive from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

It owes its unusual name to Flora Mae Statler, who founded it in 1938 and named it Surprise because she said she would be surprised if it ever amounted to anything.

It was incorporated as a city in 1960, but only started to develop in the mid-1980s with the arrival of the Sun Village community for 55+ active adults. With the development of other such communities, and the expansion of Phoenix, it has been one of the fastest-growing parts of the Phoenix area in the last 10 to 20 years. It now has a population of over 130,000 and is a bustling city in its own right.   

There is plenty to see and do in Surprise, including the Wildlife World Zoo, Aquarium, and Safari Park, the Surprise Tennis and Racquet Complex (one of the best in the U.S.), the Surprise Aquatic Center, and numerous golf courses. Hikers can enjoy the White Tank Mountain Regional Park, a beautiful mix of mountains and desert which forms the western edge of the city.

Although at the time of writing Surprise has no hospital of its own, a new “microhospital” is scheduled to open in Spring 2020. It will provide 24-hour emergency care, a 13-bed emergency department, eight inpatient rooms, an operating theater, a pharmacy, and other services.

Until it opens, the nearest hospital is the Banner Dell E Webb Medical Center, three miles away in Sun City West. The Banner Boswell Medical Center is six miles away in Sun City.

Sun Village

Below $100k – High $200s

Sun Village was the first age-restricted community in Surprise, begun in 1985 and completed 10 years later. It has 1,382 homes for 55+ active adults, divided into attached and detached homes.

Attached homes range in size from 634 square feet, providing one bedroom, one bathroom, and a one-car garage, through to 953 square feet, comprising two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a one-car garage.

All detached patio homes have a two-car garage. The smallest floor plan is 1,168 square feet for a two-bedroom, two-bathroom home, going up to 2,106 square feet for a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home. Other models offer two bedrooms and a den/third bedroom.

Amenities in Sun Village include a 47,000 square-foot community center, an outdoor pool and spa, a ballroom, several arts and crafts studios, two illuminated tennis courts, two pickleball courts, and four shuffleboard courts.

In addition, residents can use the Sun Village Golf Course, which is an 18-hole public course within the confines of Sun Village, at discounted rates. The community has several dozen clubs and groups, including for most sports, card and board games, water activities, craft classes, movies, and a singles group.

Sun City Grand

Mid $100s – High $700s

Sun City Grand was the second community to develop in Surprise and is for the 45+ active adult. Work on its 9,802 houses and condos began in 1996 and finished in 2005.

Given its size, there are a large number of different models available. Condos start at 427 square feet for a one-bedroom, one-bathroom home with a one-car garage. The largest condos are 1,020 square feet with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a single car garage. Prices are in the low $100s, making for a low-price home near Phoenix.

Single-family homes start at 1,096 square feet and go up to 3,388 square feet. All have either a two- or two-and-a-half-car garage. The more compact homes have either one bedroom and a den, and all have one-and-a-half bathrooms.

There are many amenities in Sun City Grand, including four championship golf courses, two fitness centers, fishing lakes, hiking and biking trails, several swimming pools, tennis courts, pickleball courts, three restaurants, three snack bars, and the community runs its own TV station and publishes a monthly magazine.

There’s a club for almost every activity, including most sports, board and card games, wine tasting, dining, gardening, a singles club, dancing, stained glass, a veterans club, a Republican club, and a Democratic club.

Arizona Traditions 

High $100s – Mid $300s

Arizona Traditions is the newest of the communities in Surprise, with 1,768 single family homes built from 1997 to 2013.

It’s a gated 55+ active adult community with homes that range in size from 1,052 to 2,319 square feet. All have at least a two-car garage, with some models having a three- or three-and-a-half-car garage. They also all have two bathrooms, with larger homes having two-and-a-half bathrooms. Smaller homes have one bedroom plus a den, with larger models having either three bedrooms or two bedrooms and a den.

Amenities in Arizona Traditions include a 20,400 square-foot clubhouse, an 8,300 square-foot ballroom, an 18-hole golf course, three outdoor pools, four tennis courts, shuffleboard and pickleball courts, and several arts and crafts studios covering such activities as woodworking, sewing, ceramics, and stained glass.

There are clubs for most sporting activities, for hiking, dancing, singles, poker and other card and board games, and there’s a choir.

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
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’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.

Interior view of the indoor pool at Del Webb Ponte Vedra in Ponte Vedra, Florida.

Jacksonville Area 55+ Communities With Indoor Pools

There’s something so luxurious about an indoor pool. Take a look at these communities in Jacksonville and the surrounding northeast Florida area. You’ll find indoor pools and much, much more.

Sunset on sandy and rocky beach in the Bay Area of California.

55+ Communities on the Beach in the Bay Area

Perhaps you’re ready to turn your dream of living by the beach into reality. In that case, we’ve got you covered, because there are a few wonderful beachside 55+ communities right in the Bay Area.

A 55+ couple with arthritis holding hands and enjoying a day at the beach.

The Best Places to Retire With Arthritis

Those with arthritis know the pain and discomfort can be difficult to manage day-to-day. While there are many remedies to manage the pain, one you may not consider is climate. 55Places has taken a look at the best regions to live if you have arthritis, and many of them are home to 55+ communities!

A bridge over a pond on the grounds of Sun City Lincoln Hills in Lincoln, California.

Large 55+ Communities in the Sacramento Area

One of the greatest benefits of living in a large community is the vast amount of amenities typically offered. If you’re looking for larger 55+ communities in Sacramento, you’ll want to check out the three following communities.

Aerial view of the Downtown Spartanburg skyline in South Carolina on a sunny day.

Living in Spartanburg, South Carolina

Located in the scenic foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Northwestern South Carolina—also known as the Upstate—Spartanburg is an ideal destination for active adults who want to retire in a mid-sized city with a small-town, close-knit feel.

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