When considering a retirement community, weigh a simple ‘placeholder’ on a wait list to best ensure your options when you’re ready.
All the time now, we hear about climate change this and climate change that. But did you know there is another type of “tsunami” headed our way? There is, and it’s called the “gray tsunami” – or the exponentially larger population of senior adults in this country in the near future.
The tremendously growing number of U.S. seniors is expected to stress the resources available to care for them as well as house them. And this includes what are known as “continuing care retirement communities” (CCRCs) or “life plan communities,” which offer retirees a variety of residential options, from independent living to a full complement of health care needs, such as assisted living, skilled nursing care, and, often, memory support … all within a single community.
If you even think you might be up for a continuing care retirement community, I strongly encourage you to look into joining the wait list at at least one – and perhaps multiple – CCRCs several years ahead of a move-in. Why? Because if you don’t create your options now, you may not have options when you truly need them.
Consider that among people turning 65 today, 70 percent will need some form of long-term care. And with the number of seniors coming on to the scene faster than new facilities can be built, we expect housing inventory to become harder and harder to come by.
You might say, “So what? I’ll worry about it then. There are other options.” Yes, there are other options, such as nursing homes, home care, adult day care and more. And continuing care retirement communities aren’t right for everyone. But with a CCRC, such as The Village at Brookwood (TVAB) in Burlington, you can join a wait list now for a nominal, mostly refundable amount, set the year you first want to be called about availability and decide then whether you want to move forward or not. And if you’re not sure or not yet ready, you can simply reply, “I’ll pass right now,” and let someone else move ahead of you – without ever losing your place in line.
By comparison, if you wait until you truly need something – which typically accompanies an unexpected health crisis – you will have to take whatever is available to you somewhere, if you can even get in somewhere immediately. And as I already said, that’s expected to get more and more challenging as more and more seniors enter this population demographic.
At The Village at Brookwood, one can join our wait list for a deposit of just $1,200. If you choose to move in, your wait list deposit will be applied towards your entrance fee. If your situation changes and you do not become a resident, you will be refunded $1,000 of your wait list deposit. This is common at most CCRCs, not just TVAB.
Once you turn 62 (or your partner is at least 62 and you are at least 55), you are eligible to move into The Village at Brookwood. Our average move-in age is 77, and the average age of a current TVAB resident is 83. But again – remember, with a larger and larger senior population, availability becomes harder and harder to come by. That’s why I strongly encourage people to put their names on the wait list now – and simply forget it until it’s time. You’re only creating your option, not making a commitment written in stone.
Here are some helpful tips regarding things to consider when choosing a retirement community that’s right for you:
- Know the background of the community, understand its financial security and review disclosure and financial statements.
- Consider the possible future health needs you and/or your partner would likely require – does a potential retirement community offer the levels of care you anticipate needing?
- Create a checklist for comparing the services and amenities of the different facilities you consider.
- Tour the community, eat in its dining areas and meet some of its residents.
- Consider the location of the community. How’s the traffic nearby? What’s its proximity to airports, retail, the arts, etc.? Prospects care how close their community is to grocery stores!
- Finally, discuss your future with family and loved ones and make sure they understand your goals and wishes for retirement.
No doubt, this is a complicated and very personal decision. Just don’t let simple procrastination limit your options down the road. I strongly encourage you to consider joining at least one or two CCRC wait lists to best ensure you are well-positioned to make this once-in-a-lifetime choice.
Director of Sales, The Village at Brookwood
Large variety of activities and adventures – within and beyond community – ensure never-ending robust options to make the most of any day
Retirement living doesn’t have to be … retiring.
The Village at Brookwood in Burlington, N.C. prides itself on planning a continuous stream of wide-ranging activities for its residents, both on the grounds of the community and well beyond.
“Our residents remain vital, engaged and energized,” says Betsy Huneycutt, director of Sales. “They want to make the most out of their retirement years, and our team is here to serve their goals.”
Concerts, field trips, theater outings, sports events – there’s constantly something for everyone, Huneycutt points out.
“On many days, you see The Village activity bus heading down the driveway, and your guess is as good as mine on where they’re headed. It could be anywhere!”
This month alone, the “life enrichment calendar” is bursting with options. Shopping trips, a visit to a vineyard, lunch excursion, a baseball game, a journey to a historic site in Kernersville, a dinner theatre outing and an exploration of the Greensboro Science Center are just some of the scheduled resident options scattered throughout June.
Huneycutt says that The Village’s location in Burlington – “right in the middle of the state” – creates tremendous opportunities for field trips, north, south, east and west. “It’s a simple hop to the Virginia state line, or a quick ride to either the Triad, featuring attractions in Greensboro, High Point and Winston-Salem, or the Triangle, with Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Research Triangle Park. There are truly endless options.”
But you don’t have to leave The Village to be engaged and entertained.
“And if you’re not in the mood to leave the neighborhood, there’s plenty to choose from right within our community,” Huneycutt says. “We offer worship services, games, movies, arts and crafts, wine and cheese gatherings and on and on. Our fitness center constantly hosts group exercise classes, both in our workout areas as well as our indoor pool.”