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How to Plan for a Rewarding Future: Five Things Seniors Need to Know

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Should we stay in our home or downsize to a condo? Would living with our kids be a good option (or even an option at all)? Can we afford to move into a retirement community? And what if our healthcare needs change?

As you plan for a secure, vibrant retirement, you may discover that you have more decisions to make now than at any other phase of your life—particularly about where you choose to live. To help you along the way, we’ve put together a list of five things all seniors should know about maintaining your health, financial security and sense of purpose as you begin your next chapter.  

1. Social Connections Help You Live Longer

A National Geographic study from the early 2000s identified several “Blue Zones” around the world where people tend to enjoy longer, healthier lives. What do all of these places have in common? They are robust communities that plant the seeds of socialization and meaningful relationships with others.

“Wellness goes beyond eating right and exercising,” Rob Love, an expert in helping seniors build active retirement lifestyles, says. “Social connections keep you engaged and motivated to live life to the fullest. And that yields numerous life and health benefits, like lower blood pressure and less risk of disease.”

You’ll find that environment at a Life Plan Community (formerly known as continuing care retirement communities) like The Village at Germantown near Memphis, Tennessee. Our monthly calendar is packed with activities, such as tai chi, lectures, painting classes, Zumba, poker night, happy hours and much more, that will be shared with some of the most engaging, friendly people you’ll ever meet. 

2. Your Next Act Could Be Your Best Act

Imagine spending your retirement years exploring your true passions and even discovering some new ones. From writing your novel or traveling the world to immersing yourself in a worthy cause, the possibilities are endless. Now imagine how much easier it would be to achieve these goals if you didn’t have to waste time on home maintenance, yard work and other chores.

“Freedom from all the things that come with owning a home gives people time to live their best life, whether that means starting a new hobby or sharing their talents with others,” Love explains. He also points to a recent survey showing that 85% of people who are considering a move to a senior living community would like to have a plan for the next 10 years of their life that enables them to learn, teach, grow and contribute.

Here at The Village, it’s easy to find folks who are making the most of every minute. Many days you’ll catch our resident acting troupe memorizing lines and putting together costumes for their next performance. Our loops of love club also meets regularly to knit beautiful scarves, hats and other treasures for charity. And every summer, gardening aficionados from all corners of our community compete to see who can grow the biggest, juiciest tomatoes. 

3. More Seniors Are Choosing Life Plan Communities and Loving It 

It’s understandable to want to stay in your current home as you age. Your house may be paid off or close to it. And you’ve likely spent years—or perhaps decades—making every space your own and creating treasured memories of family and friends. Why should you consider moving?

“You really want to think through the pros and cons about staying at home,” Love advises. “Is it making the best use of your funds and energy? Do you find yourself stressing about your future? Are you living the life that you truly want to live? When you focus on what you want your lifestyle to look like, you might see your current home in a different light.”

A growing number of seniors are deciding that a retirement community like The Village gives them the best of all possible worlds. How? By providing the flexibility to enjoy life the way they choose with a reliable support structure in place should their health needs change. In other words, it’s not about leaving a home you love; it’s taking an exciting step forward toward a lifestyle you love.

“The number one thing that seniors tell me after they make their move is ‘I wish we hadn’t waited. I wish we’d done this sooner,’” Love says. 

4. Your Home May Be Costing You More Than You Think

Staying in your current home might seem like your most affordable choice. However, there are lots of hidden costs like landscaping and roof repairs—not to mention property taxes, utilities and homeowner’s insurance.

“Many people think that senior living communities are out of their reach, but when they really do the math and add up their monthly and yearly costs, many find that it’s actually less expensive to live in a Life Plan Community,” Love explains. “And wow, it’s amazing what you get! Access to fitness centers, multiple dining venues and live entertainment all set amidst spacious, beautifully kept grounds.” 

At The Village, we offer a range of contracts to suit different life scenarios. We also take the big picture into account—where you are now and what care you might need later. Services such as assisted living, skilled nursing and memory care are all provided right here on campus, and our knowledgeable consultants can help you choose a plan that minimizes the impact of rising healthcare costs. 

5. Today, the Real Estate Market Is an Advantage 

Rising mortgage rates are continuing to limit the supply of homes being listed because potential sellers are having trouble affording to buy up or even downsize. This limited supply of homes for sale means that demand exceeds supply, which is pushing home resale prices to all-time highs.

What does this mean for seniors like you? For starters, it means there’s a good chance that you’ll be able to sell your home relatively quickly and for a healthy price. Keep in mind, however, that it’s impossible to predict where the real estate market will go as we move through 2024 and into 2025, so now might be the time to strike while the iron is hot.

Love couldn’t agree more. “While it’s not the best market for prospective homebuyers, it’s actually a great time for seniors to sell their homes and move to a retirement community,” he says. “A trusted real estate professional can be a valuable source for insights into home sales and pricing for your neighborhood.”

If these five tips have given you food for thought, we’ve got great news. Love will be delivering a live seminar at The Village at Germantown on Tuesday, February 13th. There, you’ll have the opportunity to get all your questions answered and take a deeper dive into what seniors need to know today about tomorrow. Call 901-616-0727 to RSVP today.

To learn more about our welcoming, energetic senior living community or to schedule a tour, call 901-737-4242.

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