What Are Retirement Communities?

There is a huge misconception about retirement communities. A lot of people think that a retirement community is a place where sick and elderly people go to live out their last few days. This conception is nothing but a myth. A retirement community is actually a fully functional housing complex where elder people (who are able to take care of themselves) retire to live in a much better and peaceful environment. There is no one static definition for a retirement community. Different retirement communities may have different enrollment rules but almost all retirement communities are age restricted and offer shared amenities. Some retirement communities even allow their residents to work part time jobs.

Retirement communities also differ in standards and types of services offered.As a senior citizen you can choose one of the following types of retirement communities.

  • Independent retirement communities that offer no personal care services to its residents.
  • Congregate retirement communities that offer at least one shared meal per day so that you have ample opportunities of socializing with other residents.
  • Mobile Homes or RVs meant specifically for active senior citizens and those who like to travel a lot.
  • Subsidized housing communities for those senior citizens with lower annual incomes.
  • Leisure oriented communities that offer a rich and high class living experience.

The number of senior citizens living in retirement communities has more than doubled during the last ten years. According to a survey, there were about 650,000 elderly people living in retirement communities in 2010. One of the reasons for this increasing popularity of retirement communities is that it allows senior citizens to stay at one place irrespective of their increasing needs for hospitality.  In addition to this, retirement homes provide more opportunities for socializing with other likeminded elder people. The general sense of community and harmony that retirement homes offers helps elder people to stay happy and cheerful.

Most of the reputed retirement homes offer their residents 3 levels of care. The first and least expensive level is known as independent living. Only those senior citizens who are able to take care of themselves and are not suffering from any serious health problems are allowed at this level. Even though the residents are supposed to do their daily house hold related chores by themselves, still all necessary facilities are made available.

The second level is known as assisted living. At this level, the employees at the retirement community assist the residents with their day to day activities. Every employee who assists a senior citizen is well trained to handle the needs of senior citizens.

The third level is the 24 hour nursing home-style care. At this level the residents are offered round the clock health care facilities with trained nurses. It is common for retirement communities to have a team of doctors on the premises so that any senior citizen in critical condition can be looked after.

There are also multiple payment plans available for the residents, you can browse through the catalog and select the one that suits your budget perfectly.

This article is written by Nick Washington. Nick is 55 years old and lives at a senior retirement community in Hawaii. He worked as a sales man during his young years. He encourages other senior people to consider retirement communities over noisy city lives.