There may have been a time when retirement communities were fairly similar. If you’d seen one, you’d seen them all. But that’s no longer the case. Today’s senior living communities tend to be unique, offering amenities and services tailored to a particular lifestyle. So how can you go about finding a retirement community that suits your personal retirement dreams? The following questions can help you hone in on the perfect fit.
How Do You Want to Spend Your Days?
If you’re like most people, you’ve probably spent some time daydreaming about the ideal retirement lifestyle. What would make you eager to start each day? Are you a lifelong learner who’s keen on taking classes at a nearby college? Maybe you’re a passionate golfer or a nature lover and would love to be able to golf or hike to your heart’s content. Make a list of the pursuits that excite you, including longtime favorites or new endeavors you’d like to try now that you have more time, and let that list guide your choice of senior living community.
Where Do You Want to Live?
Retirement can be an opportunity to make a fresh start in a new place. Is there a climate you particularly enjoy? Do you love the coast or the mountains? Or maybe there’s a city or state you’ve loved visiting and would like to make your permanent home.
Are Pets Allowed?
If you have a faithful animal companion, they’re an essential part of your daily life and your vision for retirement. Many communities are pet-friendly, but some have criteria regarding the size and types of pets allowed. As you consider prospective communities, find out about their pet policy so you know whether they’ll welcome you and your four-legged friend.
Are There Wellness Opportunities?
Being physically active is a key to healthy aging, and one of the perks of living in a retirement community is the many opportunities to engage in health-boosting activities. Take a look at the wellness activities offered in prospective communities. Is there a fitness center and customizable fitness program? Think about your favorite ways to keep active, too, and find out if you’ll have the amenities required to engage in those activities. Swimmers will want access to a pool. Gardeners will delight in raised beds. Yoga enthusiasts will look for an on-campus yoga studio.
Of course, well-being depends on more than physical activity. Many senior living communities take a multidimensional approach to wellness, offering services and amenities that foster social, intellectual, emotional and spiritual health. Find out about the community’s philosophical approach to well-being and see if it fits your personal viewpoint.
What About Your Future Needs?
When dreaming about your retirement adventures, it’s not very fun to think about the possibility of a health setback. But finding a retirement community that will meet your long-term needs is essential. In the ideal community, you’ll enjoy a happy sense of purpose and feel confident about meeting possible health challenges in the future. Consider narrowing your search to continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), also known as Life Plan Communities, which offer a continuum of care on the same campus. In a CCRC, you can take full advantage of the lifestyle in independent living knowing that, if you have a health crisis, your needs will be met without having to make a disruptive move to another community.
What’s Your First Impression?
Touring the communities that top your list is a must. Only by visiting in person can you get a true feel for the community culture, and whether it’s a good fit for you. You’ll be able to sample the food to find out if it tastes as good as it looks in the website photos. Walking through a residence will help you visualize your home life in a way that looking at floor plans can’t. And you’ll meet residents and staff members. Are they folks you’d like to spend time with and befriend? Pay attention to the impressions you gather on your visit, and trust your instincts.
The Perfect Fit at Legacy Pointe at UCF
Finding a retirement community is a process, but we think you’ll find everything you’re looking for at Legacy Pointe at UCF. We’re a CCRC, where residents enjoy the Florida sunshine, proximity to golf courses and the Econ River Wilderness Area, and life-enriching amenities and services, including a heated pool, state-of-the-art fitness center, walking paths, and gardening areas. Our affiliation with UCF means residents can attend college classes, sporting events and lectures. You’ll also benefit from our university-influenced approach to everything from hospitality to fitness. Contact us to learn more or to schedule a visit.