You love your house, but you're ready to move on. You dream of a small apartment, with less upkeep. You imagine spending more time with friends and no longer needing to drive to get everywhere. But how can you make that dream a reality, without sacrificing your quality of life?
Many modern seniors are trading in their single-family home for an apartment all their own. A big house can feel empty if you're by yourself, and it can be a lot to take care of. Here are some of the perks of renting an apartment:
This will be a big change, but for many seniors it is a change for the better.
So now that you've made your decision, what should you be looking for in your new apartment?
Everyone knows the realtor's motto: "Location, location, location." And if you don't want to drive everywhere, it should be your motto too.
A centrally located apartment means you can either walk or use public transit to get everywhere— no car needed. Imagine how nice it would be to simply stroll to the store with a friend!
Think about everywhere you like to go on a regular basis. See how close each apartment you look at is to everything you need, including:
If your doctor is too far away to walk to, how will you get there? See what it would be like to take public transit there and back. If you are looking at a senior community, ask if they provide transportation.
You will be happiest if there are fun activities to do and plenty of places to meet up with friends. You should keep an eye out for these amenities:
You need to eat, exercise, and do laundry. You want all of those things nearby, preferably within the building itself.
And don't forget that you need to have fun. Is there a clubhouse where you can play games? A sitting room where you can knit and talk with others? If you have a hobby that you love, be sure to find a place to do it.
Your apartment should be a comfortable place for you as you age. Look for:
Nobody can answer that question better than your future neighbors. Talk with them and learn what it's really like to live there. Think about asking them:
If you decide to move in, you will already know your neighbors. And if they turn out to be rude and unlikable people, you know to keep looking.
Remember when all you needed to do was look in the newspaper for available apartments? Things have certainly changed. But that change means you have more options. Now you can look at pictures of apartments without leaving your house!
In your search, don't overlook senior apartments that are designed with older adults in mind. They will have a thriving community and they specialize in the amenities you're looking for. Some senior apartments have flexible levels of care so if you ever need more help, it's available.
Stay true to yourself and be firm in what you want in an apartment. Before you know it, you'll find one that's perfect for you.