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55+ Communities Keeping Residents Active, Social and Engaged

55+ Communities Keeping Residents Active, Social and Engaged

Turning 55 is just the start of a whole new adventure. More than 92 million people fit the bill for a 55+ community in 2017, according to the United States Census. Active adults want to explore, learn, and grow socially, physically and intellectually as they approach retirement. Now, homebuilders are bringing communities to life that offer just that.

Location is key.

While active adult communities are finding success in all parts of the country, warmer climates have traditionally been a draw for maturing generations. Looking to make a final move? A location with year-round sunshine such as Florida is probably on your radar. An added bonus is that the state has no personal income tax.

In Central Florida alone, Tampa, Ocala and Orlando are home to a rising number of age-restricted communities in regions that offer entertainment, social experiences and the rich culture of a large city. Recently, WalletHub ranked Tampa the third best city in the country to retire to.

Del Webb Bexley near Tampa and Del Webb Orlando, located south of Orlando, provide 55+ living opportunities in areas with professional sports teams, major concert venues, theme parks, and recreation such as fishing, golfing, walking and biking trails. These activities appeal not just to homeowners but to families and grandchildren who will likely visit.

In addition to attractions, high-quality medical care and easy access to an international airport and cruise terminals are important. Multiple medical centers and a high concentration of clinics are top reasons people move to both Tampa and Orlando.

Fit the lifestyle.

A decrease in home size doesn’t mean a step down in quality of life. Homes must fit a buyer’s lifestyle – today and tomorrow. Zero-step entries, wider doorways and wheelchair-accessible hallway options accommodate disabilities that might come in later life.

Can’t forget about the social aspect. The National Academy of Sciences of the United States has concluded through studies that “social relationships are central to human well-being and are critically involved in the maintenance of health.”

Imagine a community with clubhouses offering spaces where residents can mingle, cafés serving snacks, beer, coffee and wine, fitness areas, resort-style community pools, dog parks, walking paths, community gardens, pickle ball and tennis courts. Active adult communities even come with full-time lifestyle directors who plan recreational activities that lead to a better body, mind and spirit. Check out a flythrough video example of the multi-million dollar clubhouse at Del Webb Bexley in Tampa,  here.

In Ocala, Del Webb Stone Creek just completed a $1.5 million-plus beautification of its amenities, including a top-to-bottom transformation of the Elan Spa, Reunion Clubhouse and Stone Creek Grille at the Golf Club. The on-site lifestyle director manages nearly 50 clubs and interest groups for activities such as travel, photography, exercise and dance.

Convenience for the 21st Century

Consider how little maintenance new homes will need and the monthly cost of upkeep compared to existing homes. Improved energy efficiencies from new construction features such as radiant barrier roofing, high efficiency HVAC and dual pane low E windows help keep the heating and cooling bills to a minimum.

The latest home technology is attractive. A recent survey we commissioned found that seven in 10 consumers believe having smart home technologies available in their home is important. Studies show that technology can reduce heating and cooling costs, improve home security and increase resale appeal. Last year we began implementing smart home technology nationally in every new home built by PulteGroup.

Pre-wired homes allow you to upgrade technology. Consider heat mapping homes for optimal wi-fi coverage with increased bandwidth and limited dead spots, voice control utilizing systems such as Amazon’s Alexa to adjust connected features just by speaking, smart thermostats, entry lighting, doorbells, locks, audio cameras and garage door openers that can be adjusted with a smart phone app for ambiance, security and comfort.

If you’re ready to start your next adventure, consider a community that’s designed specifically for you, the 55 and over homebuyer. It may be the best move you’ve ever made.

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