View of the pond, gazebo, and homes at Carillon at Stonegate in Aurora, IL

For retirees in Northern Illinois, these small or mid-sized 55+ communities still offer top-notch amenities and lifestyle options.

In some retirement destinations like Florida and Arizona, the largest active adult communities can exceed 10,000 homes and even reach as many as 60,000. Some of these resort-style 55+ communities, like Sun City or The Villages, operate like small towns that residents never have to leave unless they want to.

While some active adults seek out this retirement lifestyle, plenty of retirees prefer to live in much smaller communities. For Northern Illinois retirees, living in a small or mid-sized 55+ community doesn’t have to mean sacrificing amenities or lifestyle options.

Across Northern Illinois, these tight-knit 55+ communities each have fewer than 360 homes but still offer access to social amenities and activities. Keep reading to discover five of the best small 55+ communities in Illinois.

1. Carillon at Stonegate - Aurora, IL

Mid $200s - High $300s

Located about 45 minutes west of downtown Chicago, Carillon at Stonegate is a tight-knit community with close proximity to Aurora, Naperville, and Bolingbrook. This 55+ community consists of 336 reasonably priced single-family homes.

The homes range from 1,402 to 2,322 square feet with two to four bedrooms, two to three bathrooms, and attached two-car garages. Many of the one- and two-level homes feature open floor plans, spacious family rooms, sunrooms, and dens.

With a homeowners’ association that takes care of landscaping, lawn care, and snow removal, homeowners can enjoy more free time to gather with neighbors and participate in social activities. Many of the clubs and classes take place at the 8,000-square-foot clubhouse.

The amenities at the clubhouse include a ballroom, library, computer lab, and fitness center. Outdoors, residents can enjoy a swimming pool, tennis court, bocce ball court, horseshoe pits, and walking and biking trails.

2. Leisure Village - Fox Lake, IL

Below $100K - Low $100s 

At Leisure Village in Fox Lake, a gated 55+ community of 360 attached homes, residents enjoy an amenity-rich lifestyle with low-maintenance homes. The Leisure Hall Recreation Center at the heart of the community features amenities to suit almost every hobby and interest. 

The recreation center includes an exercise room, a computer lab, a library, a 250-seat lecture hall, a catering kitchen, a game room, and studios for arts and crafts, ceramics, and woodworking. The outdoor amenities include an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a 9-hole golf course, and two private fishing and boating lakes.

Residents enjoy a full social calendar of activities, clubs, and classes. Some of the popular groups include bowling league, photography club, golf, and exercise classes. The community also hosts regular events like bingo nights, holiday parties, movie nights, and shopping trips. 

Ideal for downsizing, the single-story attached homes range from 755 to 1,705 square feet with one or two bedrooms, one to two bathrooms, and attached one-car garages or street parking. Residents never have to worry about lawn care or snow removal, as the homeowners’ association takes care of it.

3. Haverford Place - Hoffman Estates, IL

Low $300s - High $400s 

Retirees looking for a 55+ community with single-family ranch homes for sale near Schaumburg and Elgin should explore Haverford Place in Hoffman Estates. This age-restricted community features an active clubhouse that serves 184 single-family homes.

The amenities begin with the 4,000-square-foot clubhouse, which includes multipurpose rooms, a computer station, and an exercise room. The outdoor amenities include a pool and spa, a patio, two tennis courts, and walking and biking trails.

The spacious single-family homes range from 1,878 to 2,202 square feet with two or three bedrooms, two or three bathrooms, and attached two-car garages. Many homes include finished basements, spacious family rooms, sunrooms, and front porches.

Located about 45 minutes northwest of downtown Chicago, residents can easily access the city’s world-class entertainment and dining options. For those who want to travel to visit family or take vacations, O’Hare International Airport is about 25 minutes away.

4. Chatham Grove - Aurora, IL

Low $200s - Mid $200s

With just 96 attached townhomes, Chatham Grove in Aurora feels like a tight-knit and exclusive 55+ community. Built from 2000 to 2005, the townhomes range from 1,268 to 1,591 square feet with luxury features like master suites, finished basements with wet bars, and flex rooms.

Residents of the community enjoy a clubhouse with a party room and multipurpose spaces. The grounds of the neighborhood include a patio, a scenic pond, and walking and biking trails. 

For active adults who want to stay physically active, they can use the Rush Copley Healthplex just one mile away. The facility offers tennis courts, two swimming pools, state-of-the-art exercise equipment, an indoor walking track, and over 120 classes every week.

The community’s location also puts residents near plenty of local attractions, such as Phillips Park Zoo, River Edge Park, Blackberry Farm, and Hollywood Casino.

5. Regency at The Woods at South Barrington - South Barrington, IL

Mid $500s - High $700s

Nestled within the master-planned development The Woods at South Barrington, Regency at The Woods at South Barrington offers a 55+ enclave of just 156 single-family homes. Residents enjoy private amenities and an exclusive activities director who curates a full social calendar for active adults to enjoy.

The age-restricted, 10,000-square-foot clubhouse boasts a ballroom, a catering kitchen, a fitness center, and several multipurpose spaces. The amenities continue outside with a swimming pool, patio, putting green, and athletic courts for tennis, bocce ball, and shuffleboard.

With luxury amenities and a tight-knit community feel, it’s no surprise that Regency at The Woods at South Barrington has received 13 five-star reviews from residents. Here’s what one happy resident has to say:

“This was the best decision we ever made. We looked at several communities and many builders before we made the last move of our lives... We made the right choice and there is nothing we would have changed. Great neighbors, great community, a wonderful place to stay young forever.”