Baby Boomers Challenge the Status Quo Even in Retirement

You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old. ~ George Burns

The way Americans are thinking about retirement is creating ripples of dramatic changes leading to a paradigm shift affecting policy, politics, behavior and the social fibers of our nation. As Baby Boomers reach the age of retirement many new challenges and opportunities are emerging.

Boomers are a diverse population, yet as a generality, Boomers do share some common ground with each other: Strong work ethic, self-assured, competitive, resourceful, disciplined, team-oriented. Boomers tend to have incredible focus on meeting their goals.  It is no wonder that investors, retailers and even property managers are taking notice of the unique opportunities presented during this fundamental shift about the way American’s think of retirement.

10,000+ Baby Boomers are retiring daily, with that number increasing yearly. Life expectancy is longer than ever before. Boomers are arriving at retirement with expectations.  Many of these coming of age folks want to enjoy their retirement years and anticipate spending the wealth they’ve accumulated, and taking a more leisurely pace in life.  Alarmingly, in contrast, others have not saved enough, or have had their investments shaken by unstable economic conditions leaving some Boomers to anticipate working well into their golden years.

Love is the greatest gift that one generation can leave to another. ~ Richard Garnett

Retirement brings both relief and obstacles to the lives of Boomers. Boomers have been at the helm of their families, during their working years balancing career and family. Not surprisingly, many of this generation are arriving at retirement while still playing a vital role in the lives of their children and grandchildren, but many are also now needed as caretakers for aging parents.  Some Boomers are choosing to purchase neighboring homes for their aging parents or move them closer, but with the peace of mind of a care facility to assist with the more physical aspects of caring for a loved one.

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Downsizing can make retirement more enjoyable. Less house, but more home!

Another way that Boomers are addressing the challenges of retirement is by downsizing and purchasing affordable housing. Moving to Florida is a bucket list dream for many.  Some Boomers opt to become snowbirds and enjoy the best of both worlds. The cost to live in Florida is comparable or lower than many other places in the nation.  Florida has a lower tax rate and does not have a state tax which makes it quite enticing.

In the manufactured housing industry owners and investors know that they can offer some prime advantages to new retirees beyond just the economics.   There has been considerable reinvestment in communities.  It is clear that retirees want to enjoy their free time.  Clubhouses, shuffleboard courts, billiards, and heated pools have become the standard.  Retirees want to remain active.  Tennis courts, pickleball, lap lanes in pools, and fitness centers have become very desirable amenities. Some larger     communities even have golf courses, saunas, restaurants and more.

Let us never know what old age is. Let us know the happiness time brings, not count the years. ~ Ausonius

Community managers know that retirement is a social time.   Planned activities are often a deciding factor for Boomers when choosing which community to settle into and call home.  Many have moved south for the warm, sunny weather and the Florida lifestyle, leaving behind family and friends. This can be an overwhelming transition for some, but community living has advantages when it comes to staying active and making friends.  As newcomers join activities, residents tend to be welcoming and their common interests create strong ties.  They often report these new relationships feel like extended family and lifelong friendships have been created.

No doubt that even in retirement the Baby Boomers continue to be a generation that has changed our nation. Baby Boomers continue to redefine retirement.  Aging is no longer about growing old gracefully, it is about living more, new beginnings, and chasing passions.  And who is more qualified to challenge the status quo than the Baby Boomer generation?

The good life is a process, not a state of being. ~ Carl Rogers

 

 

5 Reasons Active Adult Communities Can Change Your Life

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Pickleball Cookout at Rolling Greens, Ocala.

Did you know that living in an active adult community can change your life? Studies show that activities and events can have numerous cognitive and health benefits for seniors. Here are 5 reasons you should not only live in an active community, but get involved too!

SLEEP SOUNDLY

Research shows that people who have more fulfilling relationships tend to sleep better than those who don’t. If you’re experiencing insomnia, try getting involved in the community. Getting active and on a regular schedule will help you to reset your internal clock, which will also help you sleep more soundly. Try going to some activities in the community that happen at the same place and time every week. It will give you a schedule, and help keep you accountable.

BRAIN BOOST

Did you know that research has proven people who stay mentally engaged can prevent the onset of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease?  Newby Management community’s like Rolling Greens host numerous events that can get your mind going. Activities like book club, card games or woodshop can teach you new skills, revive your interest in books, and keep your mind sharp. Rolling Greens keeps the calendar full, and even has an on-site social director to plan events. Communities like these will help keep your mind in shape! In one study at Rush, researchers followed about 800 people, all about age 80, for four years. The participants had no signs of dementia at the beginning of the study, but some described themselves as lonely and tested positive on a “loneliness scale.” During the study, 76 people developed Alzheimer’s-like dementia. People with the highest scores on the loneliness scale had more than twice the risk of developing dementia as those with more social connections who had scored lower.

INCREASED IMMUNE SYSTEM

Get out there and active, because studies show that getting out and having people around you makes your immune system function better. As humans, being active and social is an important part of our overall health, so important, in fact, that it literally affects how our body operates. Stay healthy and find some new friends to have fun with.

LIVE LONGER

A strong social circle can actually increase the length of your life! Even more importantly, it’s actually friends, not family, who give you the boost. The Australian Longitudinal Study of Aging studied the effects of friendships on health and aging. Older adults with the strongest network of friends were 22% less likely to die during the study than those with the weakest network of good friendships.

HAPPY & HEALTHY

Socially active seniors usually have a more positive mood, and it can help fight depression. Loneliness is a unique risk factor for symptoms of depression, and loneliness and depression have a synergistic adverse effect on well-being in middle-aged and older adults. Get out, get active and make some friends. Finding a well-rounded community is important. When you’re researching adult communities for retirement, be sure they are active and have lots of events! (And then make sure to go to them, after all, it’s good for you!)

Sources:

https://www.aarp.org/health/brain-health/info-11-2008/friends-are-good-for-your-brain.html

https://www.livescience.com/55882-family-not-friends-increase-longevity.html