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What Kind of Home Are You Looking for in Retirement?

Category: Retirement Real Estate

February 25, 2013 — We are curious to find out and report on what our members are thinking about when it comes to retirement living preferences – what types of towns, homes, and communities you are thinking about choosing for retirement.

NOTE: Thanks to the more than 750 people who took this poll. It is now closed. To read our report on what we learned, please go to: “One Story Living, Walkability Dominate Retirement Living Wants

Please read the report and make your Comments at the end of that article.

Posted by Admin on February 25th, 2013


  1. Still looking for folks to join us in our quest to build the first RTYD (Rock Til You Drop) community. A community built for musicians, artist, and everyone that loves music and the arts.

    by Jerry M — February 26, 2013

  2. Hi Jerry,
    I’m looking for a community of “classical” musicians. So far I have been able to find several in Europe, but absolutely nothing in the United States. I think that the concept of “niche” communities is wonderful. Once again, I am writing to ask if anybody knows of a retirement community where the emphasis and interests are geared to retired classical musicians and opera singers. Any help would be tremendously appreciated as I am not interested in moving to Europe at this stage of the game !

    by Pamela B. — February 26, 2013

  3. Hello everybody. I’m terribly sorry if I offended anybody by using all CAPS in my first note. My typing skills leave much to be desired and it is just easier for me to type using CAPS. Please forgive my shortcoming !

    Editor’s note: We’re not offended Pamela, in fact we’re happy to have you as a loyal and regular contributor to this site!

    by Pamela B. — February 26, 2013

  4. I’m looking to live in a house on “main street” in a small town in a warm climate! 🙂

    by Melissa — February 26, 2013

  5. Hello Jerry and Pamela – I know what you mean. I have played many kinds of music over the years – classical, folk, country and western, rock, old time, swing – but never found a community of (any kind of)musicians. The musicians have always been spread around and must arrange a time and place to meet regularly. Do you have a location in mind for us old musicians?

    Old musicians never die they just diminish.

    by Loni — February 26, 2013

  6. Melissa – Me too! Where is that place? Just a little heaven on earth.

    by Bob P — February 26, 2013

  7. Jerry,

    I sure would like to participate in your RTYD community, but as part of the audience!

    by Julie — February 27, 2013

  8. I too am looking for a community of visual artists, musicians,as well as performers in the arts. Being around creative, interesting people seems like an exciting way to keep thinking young and maintain an active lifestyle. Ideally,this place would be out of the snow belt,be a place of visual beauty,have easy access to transportation, higher ed opportunities, medical care,libraries and other such amenities. A tough order, indeed, but possible could be found or established.
    Maybe a special interest group can be created on site to share in the search.

    by Linda — February 27, 2013

  9. I am aware of both choral groups and small ensembles in various 55+ communities in the Phoenix area. I have sung all my life and this definitely would be a criterion for finding a 55+ community. If the community is large enough I think you could find a few other musicians to start some sort of chamber group. The other option would be to retire in a city that has an established symphony program. In our small community of 7,000 we have both a full orchestra and community band that welcomes new members. The orchestra currently has about 80 members.

    by Dave — February 27, 2013

  10. While we call it the Rock Til You Drop, the community would be open to all types of musicians… a true melting pot of genres and ages. Cross polination between different genres is responsible for the great music that emerged during the 60s and 70s. Once you have your instrument (or voice), playing and singing is a very low cost hobby, something you can do most every day while bringing pleasure to those of us that enjoying listening as much as we do playing.

    I Put a poll out on late last year asking if the RTYD would be a cool way to retire. Below the poll is a detailed vision for this type of community.

    by Jerry M — February 27, 2013

  11. I have time to keep looking but I would like to be in a maintence free place near water, with places to walk and also within walking distance to a town center with stores and restaurants. Would prefer to stay in the Northeast April-Christmas and then vacation in the south Jan-March. The humidity bothers me more and more as I get older so may have to look in the mountains of Maine, NH, VT and upstate NY.

    by Nancy W — February 28, 2013

  12. Could you pls tell me what CDD fees in Fl are?

    by Tom — February 28, 2013

  13. Hi, Pamela. I just found this one online: Great writeup about their music community.

    by Sandy — March 2, 2013

  14. Tom….CDD is short for Community Development District-a fee tacked on to a HOA Fee sometimes…even area’s wothout a HOA can have monthly CDD fees…it is used to develop roads, sewers, etc…
    You also have DRC which is a Deed Restricted Community which can charge a monthly fee…and then in some area’s you have what they call a Recreation Fee…charged by the builder for the use of the community center, pool, common areaa’s…this one Ducks for it it controlled exclusively by the builder and he can raise the monthly fees when ever he wants and there is no control over it….

    by Russ — March 3, 2013

  15. To Nancy W– I’m with you about those humid states. My grandmother, who is long gone, lived in Rye, NH. Beautiful location where I spent lots of my time as kid in the summer. Have looked there but costs are VERY high. Also like you I so want to be near the water, preferring ocean to lake but have not found anything that is in a price range I can afford.

    by Anne — March 3, 2013

  16. I am looking for a 2 bedroom home with a decent yard (room for pets and garden as well as a patio/barbecue area) where I can rig a hammock or two, near the beach, but with mountains close too. I want to have a dog or two where I live … Great Danes are my favorite. I enjoy neighbors but don’t really want a house by house neighborhood setting. And, of course, a pool/hot tub thrown in would be a little bit of heaven.

    by Terry MacDonald — March 3, 2013

  17. My wife and I bought a straight Ranch…I love the fact everthing is on one floor and that I won’t have to climb stairs anymore…as far as where…warm/hot/muggy weather is great…for I would rather “B” about the heat then the snow and the cold…

    by Russ — March 4, 2013

  18. I currently live in a beautiful four bedroom home now, but seriously am considering a manufactured home for retirement to pay for with cash. Any thoughts on manufactured homes? Some pictures that I’ve seen look very nice.

    by Maggie — March 4, 2013

  19. The Villages, Florida has many musical groups, Jazz, Classical, etc. as well as Drama clubs etc. Many retired show biz. people. Singers, Actors, Musicians, and Opera Singers. Worth checking it out.

    by Dianne T — March 5, 2013

  20. My ideal would be a one story 2 bedroom, study, 2.5 baths, with a screened porch and some kind of view of trees or mountains or water. Would like a new place with low maintenance, very energy efficient and yard maintained by the development. Prefer in a retirement community with lots of activities and opportunities to meet others of similar minds. Should be near shopping, medical facilities and a major airport. Low tax state would be a plus and tolerable summers and winters.

    by LS — March 6, 2013

  21. LS, I am looking for the exact same things as you are. I’m single and would like to find a community that has activities for singles. Considering DE near the beaches, e.g., Lewes, Rehoboth, Bethany, etc. However, there is so much to choose from, it is mind-boggling. I don’t do well with high humidity, and I’m not sure if that would be a factor in these areas.

    by Nancy M — March 6, 2013

  22. I actually want a lot (double meaning here). It does not have to be large, but mine to have small garden have dog enjoy be with me when outside. Pet friendly is a most. And that means more than allowing pets. I used to do search and rescue and still compete in dog sports.

    One story main living…yup! Close to grocery stores and close enough to some culture. I like to be near a college(s), but not a “College Town” if that is the only source of “things”. I actually like to be near a medical school/college (from my work background).

    Nancy, yes a place for singles to be comfortable. I am also single and want a diversified community whether over 55 or not. I find that seems to have more opportunities for good friendships since I will be losing work as a place to meet friends and will need to look to hobbies and neighbors more than ever.

    by Elaine — March 7, 2013

  23. Many respondents cite “No Maintenance” as desirable for retirement homes.
    After owning homes, I have lived for over ten years in a rental house. It is “No maintenance” because the owner replaced the roof and the refrigerator
    when it was needed. I have a yard which I really enjoy and now that I am retired, I need the exercise. When I get too old or weak, there are plenty of lawn services for hire. Just pointing out that you do not have to be in an expensive community to be “maintenance free.”

    by Moving South — March 13, 2013

  24. Moving South, My landlord will finally replace roof after 3, yes three, years of a roof leak. It took a CO emergency to get heating fixed. Unfortunately, every time I wanted to find a new place, I had a family emergency and work emergency that limited my finding a new place. I will rent when I retire for probably buy.

    by eric — March 14, 2013

  25. I retired recently and am a social ballroom dancer. Are there any communities that have a large group of people who enjoy this hobby? I currently reside in NJ, and have many places to dance, but I have to drive anywhere from ten to thirty-five miles or so. Of course, we all know NJ is NOT a tax friendly state. A diversified community is important to me as well: near a university hospital, plenty of activities for singles, restaurants, walkability. Looking for a duplex or separate small house within a 55+ community, preferably warmer less humid climate, in a retirement friendly state.

    by Emily — March 22, 2013

  26. Nancy and LS – I am looking for the exact same thing!! Have already visited several communities in DE and plan on going back. We should try to find a way to communicate outside of this site to share ideas!!

    by Kathy — April 12, 2013

  27. Kathy,

    What communities have you visited? I’m going to DE within the next 2 wks. I currently live in MD. Some developments I’m interested in are: Bay Forest in Oceanview, DE, Bayfront in Lewes and Bethany Woods in Bethany Beach.

    I checked out medical facilities and Beebe Hospital is rated very well. Living in MD, I’m spoiled by having Johns Hopkins and the University of MD Medical Center (known for its Shock Trauma Center.)

    I, like several others, are in limbo (i.e.inertia) about what to do. I have an outstanding internist, dentist and veterinarian for my cats and dog. However, change is what life is all about. What is the worst that can happen? If I don’t like where I have moved, I can always move somewhere else. I know that involves the moving expenses, etc., but sometimes you just have “to go for it.”

    Kathy, where do you currently live?

    by Nancy M — April 13, 2013

  28. I’m looking for a niche community that caters to active musicians…. particularly pianists of which I am one. I’m always studying doing performance seminars etc. although not professional I am advanced and want to continue my studies. Thus I’m looking for a community that caters to ongoing serious study as well as an active lifestyle. I’m wondering if there any such communities out there or if anybody knows of such. there appear to be some in Europe according to some of your bloggers but have not been able to locate these. Any help would be appreciated

    by Ingrid — June 9, 2014

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