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Traditions of America is excited to bring the 55+ Live Better lifestyle to Bethlehem with its latest community - Traditions of America at...

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Traditions of America at Lititz is an award-winning 55 and older community located in the rolling hills of Lancaster County.  The co...

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Traditions of America at West Brandywine, is a brand new active adult community in the most sought-after Philadelphia suburbs. Located in...

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Everything you need to live life to its fullest is now in Peachtree City. With Kolter Homes’ award-winning active adult community, Cressw...

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Named "One of the Nation's Best Residential Communities" by the prestigious Urban Land Institute, as well as "The Best Neighborhood to Li...

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Exercise is For Everyone…..Especially Baby Boomers

Category: Health and Wellness Issues


“The only reason that I would take up jogging is so that I could hear heavy breathing again.”

Erma Bombeck?

Editor’s note: Thanks to Dan J for making this suggestion about a fitness article: “Fitness…particularly since other apps or websites are geared towards younger folks. How about featuring a few tips here and there from fitness folks who may hold classes at some of these retirement places?” Leigh Pujado has been kind enough to help us carry out this suggestion, sharing the valuable insight she has gained as a long time personal trainer at WeBeFit.com.

By Leigh Pujado

April 29, 2019 — You know you are supposed to exercise.  Practically everyone in your life, from your doctor, to your spouse, your kids, to your annoyingly fit at 70, tennis playing neighbor has consistently reminded you of the importance of getting in shape.  So why is it that only 35% of you Baby Boomers are working out regularly?*

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Posted by Admin on April 29th, 2019

Social Security Trustees Report: 2019 Will Be Last Year for Balanced Budget

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

April 26, 2019 — The Social Security Trustees annual report is out, which shows some small changes in the status of Social Security. This year, 2019, will be the last time that the amount paid out in retirement benefits is less than the money coming in – taxes paid into the system by workers combined with interest earned on reserves. But in 2034 the real crisis begins. That is when the reserves in the retirement portion of Social Security (OASI) are exhausted and the fund must rely exclusively on taxes paid in from working people to cover promised benefits. Starting that year, unless something is done soon, Social Security will be able to only pay about 77% of promised retirement benefits.

There are a variety of different ideas on how to fix the problem. Only one proposed solution has been proposed in Congress so far, and it has achieved solid partisan support. Introduced by Democratic congressman John Larson of Conn., his solution would increase both benefits and taxes. A few of the many Democratic presidential candidates are tossing out ideas that would eliminate or expand the maximum income subject to FICA taxes, increase payroll taxes, and/or add an investment tax. The Republican approach is to hold the line on increasing taxes while curbing benefit growth. Whatever the approach, the Trustees are urging Congress to do something, as the longer they procrastinate, the more serious the problem. The crush of baby boomers collecting Social Security retirement benefits finally starts to abate in 2030, when the last baby boomers should be starting to take their benefits.

One significant change in this year’s report is what is happening in the disability component of Social Security (DI). For whatever reason, new disability claims are declining, with the result that the fund is predicted to remain solvent much longer than thought earlier (2052 vs. 2032 last year).

The Trustees recommend that lawmakers address the projected trust fund shortfalls in a timely way in order to phase in necessary changes gradually and give workers and beneficiaries time to adjust to them. Implementing changes sooner rather than later would allow more generations to share in the needed revenue increases or reductions in scheduled benefits. Social Security will play a critical role in the lives of 64 million beneficiaries and 178 million covered workers and their families during 2019. With informed discussion, creative thinking, and timely legislative action, Social Security can continue to protect future generations

This is the conclusion of the 2019 Trustees Annual Report on Social Security – We agree!

For further reading:

Competing Plans to Fix Social Security

Quiz: What is Your Social Security IQ

Comments? What is your favorite solution to solving the Social Security problem? Do you think Congress will act in time to head off the 2034 crisis? Please use the Comments section below to voice your opinion.

Posted by Admin on April 25th, 2019

Financial Survey Results Show Much Higher Retirement Confidence and Savings

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

April 22, 2019 — Have you been wondering how your retirement investments and strategies stack up to other people in your situation? Do you make the same types of investments as others… use a financial advisor… think you saved enough? Well, thanks to the almost 500 members who took the time to contribute their valuable data and insights to last week’s “The State of Your Retirement Portfolio” survey, you will know the answers to a lot of these questions. Special thanks to all contributors to the survey – we appreciate you giving back to this community!

As promised, here is a detailed report on the survey. It includes a link to 100 interesting Member comments to the survey. And you will find a list of all our previous survey reports at the end of the article.

Background
This is the second time we have asked for data about your retirement investments and expectations. Here are the highlights from the most recent 14 question poll, with comparisons to the 2015 survey results when available. Detailed findings for each question are listed below that.

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Posted by Admin on April 21st, 2019

Best Places for Singles to Retire

Category: Singles and Retirement

April 20, 2019 — In many active adult and 55+ communities much of the social life centers around couples. For people who happen to be single, that environment makes it difficult to have a full social life and results in feeling left out. We hope this article can help single people find places to retire where they are happy and feel included.

It would be a mistake to cast all retired single people in the same mold, assuming that all of their retirement needs and goals are identical. Many singles are very happy to go through retirement without a partner. Others are content to be single, but would like to find a place to retire where they feel included and a part of the community. Another group would prefer not to be single, or at least to have more friendships and social interactions than they have now. Regardless of what type of single person you might be, we hope you find this article interesting.

First we’ll talk about specific kinds of places that singles might find attractive as places to retire, and then we’ll include a few Member comments that seem especially useful to this discussion.

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Posted by Admin on April 19th, 2019

Module 6: How to Visit an Active Adult or 55+ Community

Category: Active adult communities

April 17, 2019 — Our Online Retirement 101 Course continues today on a topic relevant to any retiree interested in an active adult community: what are the best ways to visit and appraise the developments you are interested in. The topic is far bigger than it initially appears because it includes how to find and select the communities you want to visit, how to get the most out of your on-site visit, and finally, how to compare the properties on your list of possibilities. In this article we will start with a general outline of how to get started. Then we will go on to some representative comments from the hundreds and hundreds of Member Comments we have received over the years on evaluating 55+ communities. See list on “Further Reading” at end for a list of articles on this topic.

The Process: How to Get the Most Out of Your Active Community Visit Following a disciplined path to visiting and evaluating 55+ communities will get you the information and feedback to help you make the best decisions. Finding the right community for you is a process – one site visit normally won’t give you an instant answer, but it will help build your knowledge base. After visiting several communities you will be in a position to knowledgeably evaluate all the properties you are interested in. Here is a basic approach to follow:

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Posted by Admin on April 16th, 2019

Florida Short Term Rental Bills Die

Category: Retirement Real Estate

April 15, 2019 – The controversial bills advocated by online short term rental companies have apparently faded away in the Florida legislature. If passed, HB 987 and SB 824 would have taken away local control of transient rentals from local governments in the Sunshine State and given it to the State instead. While most people seem to be in favor of short term rentals (1 week or less) when they go on vacation, homeowners in tourist areas tend to resent the onslaught of one and two night renters coming through their neighborhoods (see “Short Term Rentals in Florida Legislature” with survey results). Affordable housing is another issue impacted when short term rentals tend to take over local markets. State Rep. Holly Raschein and State Senator Anitere Flores were two south Florida officials who were opposed to the legislation.

Posted by Admin on April 15th, 2019

How Do Your Retirement Finances Stack Up?

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

April 12, 2019 — It is always interesting to compare how we handle things vs. our peers and neighbors. So while it is not considered polite to discuss your finances and how you handle them, it is an important subject, and one that should not be ignored. Please fill out this short new survey which asks some basic questions about your retirement finances. There are questions about what types of investments you have, if you think you will have enough to retire comfortably, do you have a financial advisor, etc. It should just take a few minutes to complete and is completely anonymous.

We promise to write up a summary of the results and post it online in the next week or so. Comparing how you manage this important subject with your peers should be both interesting and useful – we hope!

TAKE THE SURVEY

If you have suggestions for other questions we should pursue (or to modify the ones we have) please let us know in the Comments section below. Thanks!

Links to Previous Surveys
Snowbirds Leaving for the Winter Checklist

Are You a Snowbird (and if so where?)
Climate and Weather Drive Where People Retire
Topretirements Members Very Confident About Retirement (2014)
Topretirements Members Report High Degrees of Spousal Compatibility- 2013
Our Members Getting Ready for Big Retirement Moves- 2013
Retirement Living Preferences – 2013
Medicare Survey – 2012
Best and Worst Things About Your Retirement
Your Bucket Lists Are Amazing
Top Concerns about Retire

Posted by Admin on April 12th, 2019

10 Prettiest Retirement Towns in the Carolinas

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

April 9, 2019 — The Carolinas are extremely popular retirement states, with good reason. Their winters are warmer than in the midwest and northeast, taxes and the cost of living are agreeable, and there are many great retirement towns. Here are some of our favorite retirement towns in Carolina, based on how attractive they are. The competition for prettiest retirement town in the Carolinas is pretty stiff, in fact you probably have some of your own favorites. Please share your suggestions in the Comments section at the end.

Beaufort

Beaufort, SC. The Old South lives on in the quaint seaside charm of this town, pronounced b’yoofurt. Known as the “Queen of the Carolina Sea Islands”, the Spanish came here in 1514 and it was chartered by the British in 1711. It lies in the Sea Islands or “Low Country” area of South Carolina near Hilton Head.

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Posted by Admin on April 8th, 2019

Don’t Get Tripped up By These 5 Social Security Issues

Category: Financial and taxes in retirement

April 8, 2019 — Your Social Security benefit is one of the pillars of your retirement. To make the most of it you need to make smart choices on how and when you take it. Make a wrong move based on misinformation or lack of knowledge, and it could cost you and your spouse tens of thousands of dollars in the years ahead. This article will go over a few of the areas that seem to trip up the most people. To help answer these questions we used information from the very helpful SSA.gov website. Use these examples to help inform your own decisions, along with your own careful research.

Choices…and Decisions

It is up to you to apply for Social Security retirement benefits. If you don’t apply, you won’t get them. You have your first option to start receiving retirement benefits when you turn 62. Taking them then gives you the smallest monthly payment, but it is money in your bank account now. You can apply at any time from age 62 on, but your monthly benefit will go up for every month you wait to claim (benefits are capped at age 70).

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Posted by Admin on April 7th, 2019

Voting with Their Feet: The Best States for Retirement 2019

Category: Best Retirement Towns and States

April 3, 2019 — So many times we are asked, what are the best states for retirement? There are many ways to answer that question, and in fact over the years we have tried several. You could consider it from a tax viewpoint, as in which states retirees will experience the lowest taxes. Or you could compare on other economic factors like cost of living. Alternatives are best climate, natural hazards like hurricanes, geographic features like beaches and mountains, political climate, financial health of the state, medical care, etc.

Ultimately, identifying the best state for retirement is a very personal question. In the end it boils down to what is the best state for YOUR retirement. It is very possible that your best state is where you live now, if it meets your desires, since 80% or more retirees do not cross state lines after they retire.

In this year’s best states for retirement roundup we are going to attack the question in a very practical way. First we’ll look at where the most people are actually moving in retirement. Then we’ll add some states that folks seem to be very interested in retiring to, based on the ones they spend the most time reading about on this site.

Where people actually move
First, let’s look at where people actually move for retirement, because that is the acid test of retiree preference. SmartAsset.com has done a great job extracting U.S. Census data to track the net migration of people ages 60 and over – that is, where more people that age move into a state than move out.

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Posted by Admin on April 2nd, 2019