“…not ready for a retirement village?”
As more seniors seek out active, healthy lifestyles beyond their salaried years, retirement living has completely transformed from decades past. Retirement village living is one of a number of lifestyle choices available to today’s over 55s. The old rationale of waiting until health deteriorates, or for a life crisis that forces you to sell up and move from your family home, is obsolete in this 21st century.
Bedsits: a bygone era
For many of us, our only experience of ‘retirement homes’ is recollections of visiting aged grandparents in a cosy one room unit, with little more than a shared tea room. This retrospective vision is no longer reality.
Active health, living life to the full
Well maintained, resort style facilities like indoor swimming pools, impressive community centres, libraries, gymnasiums, bars, pennant bowling greens and 2 to 3 bedroom villas have replaced the bedsit huddles of past eras. While some residents have found themselves living in a retirement village because of changed life circumstances, the demographics are shifting to a more youthful, active community that can age together, in place.
“I wish I’d made the decision earlier”
“Once they've moved in to one of our retirement villages, I find a commonly shared reflection is that they wish they’d made the decision to move in earlier,” shared Julie Campbell, Marketing and Community Engagement Manager of Retirement Communities Australia.
“Sadly, we have our share of resident stories of grief and loss, where someone has lost a spouse or partner, and they just don’t want to feel alone anymore. They want to feel safe and secure knowing they have a community around them,” she continued. “I've had residents tell me how much their spouse would have loved living here.”
Align your lifestyle to your values
Planning your retirement years is about aligning the lifestyle you want to live with your values, and then considering what you’re able to invest to achieve your retirement aspirations.
If you value security, a sense of community and have a priority list of interests and activities that you want to dedicate time to – do your current living arrangements meet these priorities now? In ten or twenty years’ time? Investing time in planning as early as possible will mean that you are in control of the lifestyle you choose to lead. Don’t wait for a crisis when emotion can get in the way of rational decision making. Be proactive. Start researching now.
Retirement is a beginning worth planning well for.
Like to read more on this topic?
The Changing Face of Retirement Villages – 500 word blog post
Point Cook Village Residents Interview – 13 minute YouTube video
Retirement Villages in Victoria – free eBook of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)