Retirement is for relaxation, exploring new hobbies, spending time with family, and enjoying your time. It isn’t for repairing your house, keeping up with daily chores, or worrying about mowing the lawn. If you would rather spend your hard-earned free time on the things you like rather than work, a 55+ community might be the right choice for you.
Independent living communities, senior living centers, and retirement villages are all examples of 55+ communities. These places can offer amenities like housecleaning, landscaping, meal plans, and more that will help you get the most out of your retirement. Arlington, Texas is a favorite place for many seniors, and there are plenty of communities to choose from like Bethesda Gardens or Parkwood Retirement. Both of these facilities won SeniorAdvisor.com’s 2016 Best of Senior Living Award and all can offer you the freedom to enjoy retirement.
Typical apartments in Arlington aren’t expensive, but 55+ communities will cost a significant amount more. Since they can offer seniors so many extra services that a regular apartment might not be able to, they also charge more. A normal one-bedroom apartment in Arlington typically costs around $733 per month while a 55+ community one-bedroom apartment averages about $3,700. Now, based on your location and the services you get, you can find places that are as low as $1,400 and as high as $4,800.
You will also not be able to rely on Medicaid, VA benefits or long-term care insurance to cover your costs. While these things will pay for health care at home or stays in a nursing home, they don’t cover living costs for healthy seniors. You do have a few options, though, to help lower your costs.
If you have been saving for retirement or have a pension fund, now is the time to put that money to use. Social Security payments can also help pay for your new home. If you’re moving from a home you own, selling or renting it out can bring in some extra cash. You could also choose to get a roommate, and as long as you both can live with each other and your community allows it, this is a good way to cut costs in half.
Come up with a list of things that you would like in your new home as well as the type of lifestyle you would like to have. Would you like your grandkids to stay overnight? Find a community that allows overnight guests. Do you have a lot of pets? Find a home that allows you to keep them. Would you like to travel? Choose a place that is low maintenance and will be comfortable while you rest in between trips.
You get to design your life during retirement so once you have your list, find a place that fits those needs. You can ask for suggestions from friends or family members, but make sure you visit each facility before you decide.
Each facility is different and will have various services that are built into the cost of rent so you should ask what is included before you sign a lease. Many places will have things like cable, utilities, and house cleaning or laundry services covered under your rent. They may also provide free transportation around town.
Meal plans are sometimes included in your cost but sometimes you can choose to have one added. If you don’t want to cook, ask to see their meal options but if you like preparing your meals and want to save some money make sure you can opt out of their meal plan.
With the basics covered, each community will have their own services and amenities that can vary widely from place to place. Some might have a swimming pool while others will have walking trails or a dog park. Some of these extras could be free to residents, but other services might cost more money. Things like:
Onsite salons Restaurants Massage therapists Entertainment like movies or concerts Cooking or art classes Emergency services Worship services Physical or occupational therapy Resident parking
These could all be extra costs so make sure you know for sure.
Make sure you take the neighborhood the community is located in into account as you do your initial search. Arlington is relatively close to the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, which makes it an ideal location if you like to get out and about. However, if you want a quieter place, choose one in a more suburban area of Arlington. Also, make sure the places you want to go are walkable, if you have no transportation options available.
You also need to plan for your future and the future of your health as you consider these communities. Do you need a home where you can age in place and won’t have to move if you require more help? A facility that offers a continuum of care might be ideal. Do you not mind moving and don’t plan to stay in your 55+ community forever? Look for a place that allows a more independent lifestyle.
Find assisted living in Arlington near you.