Down­size your life, not your lifestyle

October 31, 2023 • Source: Source

Think­ing of downsizing?

More aging Amer­i­cans are. The main rea­son: Sim­plic­i­ty. The home where they raised a fam­i­ly has more space than they need now, and car­ing for it has become a bur­den – both in time and mon­ey. Plus there’s anoth­er con­sid­er­a­tion: With a move, they have the oppor­tu­ni­ty to cre­ate a new life in a new space.

That’s why Rich Misiorows­ki, a res­i­dent of Smith Cross­ing, sold his house. I had a large home in Frank­fort [Illi­nois] for 33 years, and it was becom­ing a bit much for me to han­dle.” He and his daugh­ter researched avail­able hous­ing options and chose the Smith Cross­ing Life Plan Com­mu­ni­ty – not only for the active lifestyle and ameni­ties – but because he was able to age in place with a life­time of care.

The con­tin­u­ing care was a big fac­tor,” he said. My daugh­ter told me Dad, mov­ing is a big chal­lenge. You don’t want to have to do it again.’”

It’s bet­ter to down­size now rather than later

Mr. Misiorows­ki remains active and vital and that’s the best time to down­size, says Dr. Rod­ney Har­rell, Vice Pres­i­dent of Fam­i­ly, Home, and Com­mu­ni­ty at AARP.

Mov­ing is hard at any age, and it only becomes more dif­fi­cult as we grow old­er.” When you’re inde­pen­dent, you’ll be able to ful­ly enjoy the lifestyle ben­e­fits that down­siz­ing can offer, such as low­er liv­ing costs, less house-relat­ed work, and a fresh way of liv­ing with more ameni­ties and services.”

You’ve down­sized your space. Is that enough? 

Sim­ply mov­ing to a small­er house or con­do may reduce your expens­es (though often not as much as peo­ple expect), but may not deliv­er on your lifestyle expec­ta­tions. For exam­ple, new friend­ships may be hard­er to make than anticipated.

Anoth­er con­sid­er­a­tion would be loca­tion. It could become more dif­fi­cult to get around town, espe­cial­ly if you have mobil­i­ty issues or stop driving.

A lot of peo­ple make the mis­take of focus­ing [on the space] and not loca­tion,” says Dr. Har­rell. Where your new home is locat­ed can make a big dif­fer­ence for your health and well­be­ing.” When you’re con­sid­er­ing down­siz­ing options, ask your­self, Will my new neigh­bor­hood be walk­a­ble and acces­si­ble to com­mu­ni­ty ser­vices and ameni­ties? Will it encour­age social inter­ac­tion and enhance my independence?”

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This is an oppor­tu­ni­ty to upsize your life

A not-for-prof­it Life Plan Com­mu­ni­ty, like Smith Cross­ing, allows seniors to down­size to a more man­age­able space and, at the same time, enjoy a vibrant and well­ness-based lifestyle – with life-enrich­ing ameni­ties and ser­vices right out­side their door.

I tell peo­ple, while your apart­ment may be small­er than your pre­vi­ous home, our restau­rant, pub, the­ater, gym, meet­ing spaces and walk­ing trails are also part of your home,” says Smith Cross­ing Sales Direc­tor Antho­ny Her­ring. So, you’re not just liv­ing in your apart­ment – you have a lot more space out­side to live in.”

The main­te­nance-free lifestyle was a big sell­ing point for Ed Bag­don, when he and his wife Paula Fitz­mau­rice moved to Smith Crossing.

I’ve actu­al­ly begun to like thun­der­storms and bliz­zards,” he jokes. Because when we lived in our home in New Lenox, I’d wor­ry about the sump pump going out. And when it snowed, I’d wor­ry about get­ting the snow off the roof before there was damage.”

Ensure you’ll be secure for the future

Two of the biggest expens­es that can hurt a retiree’s bud­get and lifestyle are health­care and long-term care expens­es. Will you still be able to afford to live where you are if you have health chal­lenges? Although a Life Plan Com­mu­ni­ty has high­er up-front costs than a rental com­mu­ni­ty, it can actu­al­ly be more cost-effec­tive in the long run.

With a Life Plan Com­mu­ni­ty, you pay an entrance fee for your life care plus a month­ly fee, which cov­ers every­thing from your res­i­dence, house­keep­ing, meals, util­i­ties, activ­i­ties, ameni­ties and ser­vices,” says Mr. Her­ring. But you can get a large per­cent­age of that entrance fee back when you leave the com­mu­ni­ty. So you’re tak­ing care of your liv­ing costs and care needs while pre­serv­ing your assets for the future. You won’t find that com­bi­na­tion any­where else.”

Could a Life Plan Com­mu­ni­ty be the best down­siz­ing solu­tion for you?

Call Smith Cross­ing today and sched­ule a per­son­al­ized tour. You’ll also learn about our Tri­al Stay Pro­gram, which allows you to expe­ri­ence Smith Cross­ing for 90 days with­out any obligation.

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