What would an ideal retirement community look like?
I've been thinking a lot about this. We just paid off our house, and so it's likely we will simply be here as long as possible. At the same time, part of me would like to move into a place to just chill while staying active. Just blue-skying here.
1. Grocery store with basics within walking distance.
Nothing fancy. Something like a typical Aldi's would be great. But able to walk to it, so right in the community or on its edge.
2. Dedicated doctor or nurse practitioner on site.
Work a subscription model that would make basic use affordable and predictable, along with Medicare.
3. Studio-sized houses with easy upkeep.
Simple setup: bedroom, small kitchen, bathroom, sitting area. Wall off bedroom and bathroom—otherwise, open.
4. Bigger than "tiny houses" but not much more.
The only problem with typical tiny houses is that the sleeping area is in a loft reached by a ladder. Something the size of a shipping container would be about right, though.
5. Commons area with cafeteria-type meals available.
6. Activities director to offer optional but interesting stuff.
7. A place to meet family and visitors.
If the houses are just a little larger than "tiny houses," this could be part of the commons area—for instance, a larger kitchen that could be reserved, with a living-room or den-like area to visit with children and grandchildren.
8. Location matters.
Mountain environment but with good roads in and out. Or just surrounded by woods. Or by a lake. But someplace not particularly prone to hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, etc.
9. Close to a community college or other genuine education center.
We're not going to just sit in our rocking chairs. Now is the opportunity to dig into things we never had time for.