Age restricted communities come in many shapes and flavors, but the basic concept is the same - residency is only open to people who meet a certain minimum age. Usually the level is set at 55+ (fifty-five), while occasionally the cut off is something else - 45, 50, 60 or 65. Sometimes these communities are referred to as 50 plus, over 50 communities, over 55, 55 plus, 55+ or 55 + to indicate the minimum age.
The rules will differ by community, but the norm seems to be that at least one resident has to meet the minimum age requirement - the spouse or sometimes significant other can be younger in most cases.
The federal government and some states have specific laws for communities with age restrictions. In Florida, for example: "The housing is intended and operated for occupancy by persons 55 years of age or older and meet the following requirements:
1. At least 80% of the occupied units are occupied by at least one person 55 years of age or older.
2. The facility or community publishes and adheres to policies and procedures that demonstrate its intent to in fact be a provider of housing for older persons
3. The facility or community complies with rules established by HUD for verification of occupancy".
Federal law (Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988)to Title VIII of the 1969 Civil Rights Act requires that 100% of the residents in a community built for occupants 62-years of age or older must be 62-years of age or older. Communities intended for residents 55-years of age or older only need to have 80% of the residents and one person per household must be 55-years of age or older. If they do not meet these tests they cannot discriminate against other age groups.
The Housing for Older Persons Act (HOPA), signed into law by President Clinton on December 28, 1995, amended the housing for older persons exemption against familial status discrimination. The HOPA modified the statutory definition of housing for older persons as housing intended and operated for occupancy by at least one person 55 years of age or older per unit. It eliminated the requirement that housing for older persons have significant services and facilities specifically designed for its elderly residents. It required that facilities or communities claiming the exemption establish age verification procedures.
Children (and often grandchildren) can be a problem in a baby boomer retirement - normally there is a maximum amount of time they can live there, although this varies by age restricted community.
When it comes time for you to start looking for the best age restricted communities there are a number of issues to consider. Some you should examine are:
- Should you move far away, or stick close to where you are now
- What type of age restricted community to live in - planned, gated, golf, arts,one with a marina, etc.
- Would you be happier living in a mixed generation community (people of all ages)
- What issues and rules should you look out for in an age-restricted communities
- Do you have a spouse who is much younger than you - will they be permitted to live with you?
- Do you have young children or grandchildren that you might have to care for - how long would they be permitted to live with you?
The questions are difficult, but the process of discovering the answers can be an adventure. This website can help you with its Free eBook: "The Baby Boomers Guide to Selecting a Retirement Community: 16 Factors You Need to Consider". Just click on the title of the eBook to download your Free copy. We also have a free newsletter that alerts you about the best age restricted communities, along with interesting articles on how to choose the right one for you.
Over 1000 Community Reviews. On these pages you'll find objective profiles of over 100 of the most interesting retirement towns and active adult communities - from Massachusetts to Florida to Mississippi to California, Arizona, and Oregon, and even foreign countries in Europ and South America. Most of these towns have age restricted communities built in or near them. Along with the insightful and interesting reviews, you'll get a database of key facts about each town or development: real estate prices,age restrictions, average January temperatures, what is going on culturally, transportation and medical capabilities, etc. Use this link to find out more about the different types of retirement communities, or here to find out more about the 100 best places to retire
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