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Embrey Mill® is an all-ages master-planned community located in Stafford, Virginia, just north of Fredericksburg, and offers a totally st...

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Welcome to Cresswind Charlotte!  This nature-rich refuge of inviting streetscapes, manicured landscaping and miles of walking trails...

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Nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, Tellico Village comprises over 5,000 acres along Tellico Lake. Established in 1986...

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Cresswind Wesley Chapel is a vibrant, brand new 55+ active adult community Located just 40 minutes from Charlotte City Center.  Wesl...

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Few towns in the Southeast offer more gracious charm than Aiken, South Carolina.  Take a relaxing stroll through Aiken's tree-lined ...


Are Time Shares Part of Your Retirement Strategy?

Category: Retirement Real Estate

October 30, 2014 — Our member Louise recently started an interesting conversation about time shares on another of our posts. Then Caps suggested that we begin a Blog post on that topic. Seems like a fine idea, since we know that many retirees rely on time shares, aka Interval Ownership units, as a way to make their retirement life more enjoyable.

Time Shares – Different Strokes
Many folks have 1 or 2 time shares that they look forward to using every year. Some have additional weeks in different locales and time periods. Others we know have consecutive weeks in the same locale/complex, which allows them to stay in a favorite place for a long period of time. And then we know others who not only have consecutive weeks, but have multiple units at the same time so their children/grandchilden can visit.

How time shares get used also varies. Some folks stay (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 30th, 2014

Where Are the Prettiest Places to Retire?

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

October 28, 2014 — (Note: See our 2016 version with even more beautiful places to retire) Your editor was at a family wedding a few weeks ago when one of our smart young nephews surprised us with a question. Daeson, who was curious about, queried: “What is the prettiest town you know about?” The unexpected question stunned me, maybe because there are so many choices. I didn’t have a good answer.

Eventually I managed to stutter out Naples, Florida (to which the good wife said, Naples?), and Lucca, Italy. In the days afterwards I came up with many more, better possibilities. The exercise made me realize that it might be a really good idea to go further afield and ask you, our esteemed Topretirements members, what you think are the prettiest towns. In the interest of keeping on (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 28th, 2014

Social Security Beneficiaries to Get 1.7% COLA Bump

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

October 23,2014 — Monthly Social Security retirement benefits will increase 1.7 percent in 2015. The cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) begins in January 2015 and affects benefits received by more than 58 million Social Security beneficiaries. The Social Security Act ties the annual COLA to the increase in the Consumer Price Index as determined by the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. To read more, please visit

More Changes
The amount that beneficiaries under age 66 can receive before having (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 23rd, 2014

Tell Us Where You Are Living in Retirement

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

October 21, 2014 — Recently one of our members asked a very helpful question: “Why don’t you get people who have actually retired someplace to tell us where and why”. The request makes a good addition to other articles we have written about where people are thinking about retiring. Sorry we can’t find who it was who made this suggestion, but whoever you are – thanks for the great idea to get feedback from people who have actually retired somewhere.

In preparing for this article we found that we already have received some (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 21st, 2014

How Much Should You Take from Your Retirement Funds Every Year?

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

October 13, 2014 — Their are plenty of theories for the perfect amount to take from your retirement assets like 401(k)s and IRAs. They all try to solve the problem that if you take out too much too soon you will run out of money late in retirement, but if you are too cautious you miss out on a richer life, leaving too much of your assets to someone else, possibly the government. In contrast to some of the more complex theories, some experts suggest using a simpler measure and one that is widely in use. Their idea is to use the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) that the federal government requires retirees to take from their retirement assets beginning in the year (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 12th, 2014

The Retirement Piggy Bank You Are Probably Overlooking

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

Updated May, 2021 — (Originally published October 6, 2014) — According to the EBRI 80%% of retirees are very or somewhat confident about their ability to live comfortably in retirement. Even though that is a much higher confidence level than it was in 2014 (55%), that still leaves a lot of people worried, most of whom have very little savings and no pension to fall back on.

There is good news though
Fortunately, even if you have minimal retirement savings and no pension other than Social Security, all is not lost. You probably have a retirement piggy bank that you never even thought about – your home! Indeed for most people, the value of their homes is greater than all their other assets combined. Prices have jumped in the last year, which means that if you are willing to rent or downsize, you might have more equity than you realized.

My home is a plus, you scoff?
After all, housing expenses consume more than half of the household income of 1 in 3 Americans over 50, according to a study by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies and the AARP. The average person over 65 spends 30% of their income on housing. While the fact that (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 6th, 2014

Tampa Tops List of Best and Worst Places to Retire

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

October 3, 2014 — Among the hundreds of “Best Places to Retire” lists we come across every year, once in a while we see one that has some merit to the way the list was developed. When we saw WalletHub’s recent list of the Best and Worst Places to Retire, we were impressed.

The website analyzed the 150 largest cities in the U.S. against 25 different criteria. Those included health care, affordability, weather, ability to find a job, activities, quality of life… among others. Most of the top cities were in the Southeast, Texas, and Midwest. Most you will be familiar with, but a few you might not, such as 2 of the Texas cities: Grand Prairie (a large suburb between Dallas and Fort Worth), and Plano (city just north of Dallas). Overland Park, Kansas is a suburban city south (more…)

Posted by Admin on October 3rd, 2014