People choose to make their home in a retirement village for a variety of reasons. As well as providing somewhere to live, a retirement village can offer many solutions or desirable factors that often can't be addressed when simply moving from one street to another. For some people, it is not just a new house they are seeking, but a whole new approach to life.
Can I take my pet? Is there a minimum age limit? Common retirement village questions answered.
Make it the perfect size
If you live in a large home, you may find that you don't need all the space you have so you certainly don't want to be spending money heating it or time and effort cleaning it.
If your home is the right size for you, perhaps the layout is no longer suitable with regard to stairs or the location of the bathroom, for example.
Moving house in retirement used to be called ‘downsizing’ but think of it instead as ‘right-sizing’ and finding a home that is ideal for you. For example, moving from a two bedroom house to a two bedroom apartment might make the world of difference.
Read more about downsizing.
Carry on carefree
Retirement villages are there to make your life easier on every level so you don’t have to worry about ‘what ifs’. These villages aim to provide a wide range of services, from concierge duties, such as signing for parcels while you are away, to assistance with personal care.
Some villages can even offer high levels of medical and domestic support so you don’t need a Plan B or to contemplate alternative arrangements further down the line, such as having to move to a care home.
Good neighbours around you
Retirement villages recapture that feeling of living in a caring, cooperative neighbourhood and the sense of well-being and security this way of life brings. You are more likely to have like-minded neighbours, which will create an atmosphere of consideration and mutual appreciation.
On a more practical level, there is likely to be 24-hour emergency support from someone on site, on call or at the end of the phone.
What is it really like to live in a retirement village?
Feel part of a community
If you live in a large town or city, friends, activities and amenities can be quite a distance away making life seem quite disjointed.
In a retirement village location, you know that those around you are in a similar situation. Your pace of life may match that of your neighbours, plus there may well be many interests and hobbies you share. There are likely to be places to mingle with other village residents, such as restaurants, libraries and gardens and many activities and events to attend if you wish.
A growing trend
According to Associated Retirement Community Operators (ARCO), there are 20,000 people living in retirement villages across the UK. ARCO’s members include housing trusts and housing charities as well as housing developers, all of which provide homes for thriving communities along with flexible support services.
As stated on the ARCO website, there are currently 26 ARCO members, representing more than 400 retirement communities in the UK. This is more than 50% of all housing with care schemes and includes both private and not-for-profit providers.
Did you know? Saga has a contemporary new retirement village, set in the Wiltshire countryside, for people over 60 who want to live life to the full.
Retirement Living Guide
For further information about retirement living and how to find your perfect home, download and read our complete guide to Retirement Living and Villages.