The Villages : Florida

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What it's Like to Retire in The Villages

The Villages, located 20 miles south of Ocala, is one of the world's largest active communities, as well as one of the fastest growing communities in the U.S. It has 107,000 residents in 2013, up over 5% from the previous year. The Villages is proud to be family owned and operated, and benefits from intensive involvement from its residents. There are 3 town squares (Spanish Springs, Lake Sumter Landing and Brownwood) which have shopping, restaurants, and open-air plazas featuring free nightly entertainment. It is in these plazas that all the big holidays are celebrated by the residents: Cinco de Mayo, St. Patrick's Day, Halloween, etc.

What keeps its residents busy all day - having fun! There are 33 golf courses, 8 country clubs (residents automatically become members), along with plenty of (separate) family and adult recreational areas. The Polo Center and its Pavilion let you take in an international polo match or compete in a BBQ competition. There is virtually every kind of activity and athletic resource: archery, one finger painting, pickle ball, quilting, scrap booking, synchronized swimming, taichi, yoga, etc. Don't miss our article on "Competitors to The Villages".

Articles about The The Villages, as well Forum posts on The Villages.
Ryan Erisman's "Complete Guide to the Villages" (photo at right).


Where to Retire in The Villages and Home Prices

Housing choices are one of the odd things about The Villages, which betrays it roots as a manufactured home community. Although there are many styles and sizes to choose from, single family homes are the only housing choice (there are a few villas – attached homes). There are no apartments or condos.  The Villages’ assisted living component, Homewood, is growing rapidly and provides long term peace of mind for residents. Homewood is across the street from The Villages Hospital, the largest medical facility in this part of Florida.
According to, the median selling price of a home in late 2014 was about $190,000. lists the median sale price at $224,000 in late 2015.


What is special about The Villages

If you like big, you will like the fact that The Villages is the largest active adult community in the world, and no one else is even close. Because of that size it has unparalleled opportunities for recreation and socializing. Many people liken the experience as summer camp for adults.  Here you can make friends fast and enjoy many fun new pastimes. Here is a link to an interesting Youtube video about The Villages.


What is not special about The Villages

No apartment living. The Villages' Community Development Districts are in a dispute over tax-free bonds issued to acquire golf courses, parks, and other facilities. See related Topretirements story.

Homeowners often have a fractious relationship with the developer over control - the ballot box vs. the suggestion box is one way the relationship is characterized.


Who will like retirement in The Villages

Some people don’t like the idea of a HOA (Home Owners Association), or the idea of living in an active adult community. To get a better picture, see our free mini-guide to The Villages.  Also, don't miss the profile we 2 wrote in 2012, "Why The Villages is the Best Place to Retire for Len and Ann".


Local economy is driven by

Retirement  real estate and leisure drive the economy.

Climate and Physical Environment

The Villages is in central Florida about 20 miles south of Ocala. Winters are warm, summers hot and humid.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The Villages has countless activities and cultural events that are taking place all of the time. Anyone can participate, or you can leave it to the pros. There are hundreds of clubs and organizations from theatre to chorus and everything in between. No one could possibly take part in a fraction of what is going on here.



There is very little crime in The Villages.

Medical facilities

The Villages Hospital is a well equipped facility.


Interstate 75 is not far away. Two locations from The Villages operate almost non-stop shuttles to Orlando International Airport.  Just about everyone uses a golf cart for their everyday transportation, many couples are 2 golf cart families.


Valuable Links

Guide to Florida retirement communities
The Villages Retirement
Complete Guide to the Villages
The Villages - "A Runaway Favorite" with Federal Employees


What people are saying about The Villages

Apartments do exist!
I don\'t know why this article states there\'s no apartments or condos here. There is a Brookdale CCRC (continuing care retirement community) in The Villages called Freedom Pointe.
Posted by restets on February 27, 2014
I live in the village from last 13 years and it it is my experience of my living in the village for the research on the village life , this is very happy for us to the , green planting and valley and pools i have great books you can visit in this.
Posted by digital1234 on June 18, 2012
I have lived in The Villages for over 10 years and it far exceeds my expectations, particularly for things to do. There are some great books for research on living in the Villages including one showing all the local state parks, botanical gardens, boardwalks etc in the area: Days Out in Central Florida from the Villages. Definitely do your homework, it's not for everyone, but if you want an active lifestyle it is pretty unbeatable.
Posted by celia on May 24, 2012

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