6 Considerations for 55-Plus Home Design

One of our builders, Miller & Smith, had a blog that was recently features in Professional Builder Magazine.  Miller & Smith’s VP of Marketing, Kim Ambrose, details 6 considerations for 55+ home design and talks about what makes Birchwood at Brambleton an ideal location for 55+ Living in the mid-atlantic region. Take a look below at and see for yourself what Boomers are looking for in a home design.

6 Considerations for 55-Plus Home Design

By Kim Ambrose| Posted by Professional Builder Magazine | September 13, 2019
Birchwood_club_house_at_ Miller_7_Smith_Brambleton_community

Boomers are redefining aging by trading in early-bird specials for fine dining, cafeterias for locally sourced coffee shops, and “senior housing” for “active lifestyle.” So can redesigning the physical environment for seniors redefine aging itself? Here are six considerations for 55-plus home design:

1. Similarities with Other Life Stages

Boomers value much of the same amenities and features as Generation X, Generation Y, and Millennials, such as open concept floor plans with great rooms and large kitchens, light and natural luxury hardwood or vinyl plank flooring, quartz counters, and other luxury finishes. While first floor owner suites are in high demand for the Baby Boomer buyer, Millennials are also gravitating to ranch-style homes as well.

2. Beyond Four Walls

Although home style, design and layout are important, a life outside the house plays a bigger role in Baby Boomer’s new-home purchase decisions. In a recent survey, the AARP and the New York Times found that, when it comes to aging, respondents 55 and older looked most forward to having free time for family, friends and activities they enjoy. Their biggest fear was losing independence. All of which suggests a desire to stay connected to their current community. As a result, homebuilders and developers are paying equal attention to both physical amenities and the creation of social amenities.

For example, Birchwood at Brambleton, a 55-plus community in Ashburn, Virginia, recently opened the clubhouse which includes both an indoor and outdoor pool, a demonstration and catering kitchen, indoor and outdoor bars, game rooms, a wellness center, several arts & crafts rooms and multiuse space for parties, entertaining and special events. Creating a space to foster social interaction is key as the Boomer buyer craves connection with soft programming essentials such as clubs and activities.

3. Unretirement

According to Pew Research, the majority of Baby Boomers are still in the labor force, and the oldest among them are staying in the labor force at the highest annual rate. However, they blur the lines between traditional work and official retirement. As Boomers think about what they want to do next, many are turning to entrepreneurship. In fact, 25% of all business are started by people 55 to 64 years old. The older entrepreneurs are turning their passion into a business out of their home or a shared workspace. As a result, 55-plus home designs now include thought nooks or craft spaces, built-in desks and office spaces, or access to a clubhouse with a designated multiuse space.

4. Words Matter

Boomers are not motivated by the fear of aging. Instead, they’re attracted to a lifestyle change focused on wellness, health and community. Developers and home builders are taking note and reimagining the aging process by turning away from stigmatic and stereotypical branding, features and home trends. Gone are the days when marketers branded community with terms such as “senior housing” or “retirement living.” Even the term “active adult” is on its way out and considered a bit taboo. We’re now seeing the rise of “resort-style living” and “active lifestyle homes” used across age-restricted communities.

5. Special Degree of Staging

What is the biggest challenge for designing a 55-plus home? 
Coupling the latest design trends with subtle aging-in-place features and marrying modern touches with tried-and-true traditional elements for the nuanced Boomer consumer. While single-level living is popular for 55-plus, builders are taking it a step further by adding elevators to multi-level homes. The aging-in-place feature allows homebuyers to stay put longer when mobility challenges set in. Additional features for 55-plus homes also include: deep toe kicks under cabinets to reduce bending, raised ovens, dishwashers, vanities and toilets, lever handles for faucets and doors vs. traditional knobs, and zero step living for home entrances, showers and garages.

In terms of aesthetic, cool-toned grays and silver accents are on their way out as homebuyers gravitate to warmer neutrals and metallic finishes. Overall, we’re seeing a Boomer preference for modern traditional home design rather than the contemporary style. For example, while the minimalist white and gray palette is still popular among younger demographics, the older generation is shifting preferences to greige and brushed bronze.

6. Sub-Neighborhoods over Snowbirds

In the mid-Atlantic markets, we’re seeing 55-plus homeowners stay local rather than migrating to the major retirement hubs in Florida or Arizona. In the case of Birchwood, which is a sub-neighborhood of the master-planned Brambleton community, many of the homebuyers had family near the Ashburn area or even within the market rate neighborhoods of Brambleton. Providing a strong amenity package, a walkable community with access to nature, shopping, and soft social programming was key for these Boomer buyers.

Birchwood at Brambleton Pickleball players


Birchwood at Brambleton Recognized Nationally

Birchwood at Brambleton 55+ community in ashburn, virginia
In its first year of opening, Birchwood at Brambleton has been recognized nationally as one of  “The 10 Best New Communities of 2019” by 55places.com, and the only active adult community in Virginia to make their list!  Take a look at what 55 Places had to say about Birchwood, listed as the number 8 top 55+ community in the nation:

#8: Heading back to the Mid-Atlantic, Birchwood at Brambleton is located in the popular Washington D.C. area in Virginia. Built by multiple builders, Birchwood at Brambleton will have over 1,500 age-restricted condos and attached homes upon completion. 

 The community has a long list of amenities, some already built and some currently under construction. They include a 20,000-square-foot clubhouse with a health and wellness center, hobby rooms, a golf simulator, an outdoor pool, and an outdoor kitchen. There are also courts for pickleball and bocce, a community garden, and a fishing pier for catch-and-release fishing.”

Birchwood at Brambleton Community in Virginia

Life Refreshed

Building upon the success of Brambleton – the #1 master planned community in Virginia – the same development team branched out to create Birchwood at Brambleton with a fresh yet similar and thoughtful approach: a lushly landscaped, walkable community with open spaces and trails that lead to top-notch amenities and modern, low-maintenance home designs. The close proximity to the well-established Brambleton community with a vibrant Town Center featuring a public library, movie theater, fitness center, grocery store, multiple restaurants, retail and medical offices, gives residents added peace of mind.

 

A Homestyle for Everyone

55+ kitchen in Birchwood by Van metre

Find your perfect fit in Birchwood among three different award-winning builders – Miller & Smith, Van Metre Homes and Winchester Homes. Low-maintenance home styles range from single-families, attached courtyards, bungalows, carriages and villas to condominiums with 1,000 to over 3,000 square feet, and are priced from the $300s to $700s.  Many floorplans offer the convenience of main-level living and additional features such as elevators, garages, lofts, basements and outdoor spaces.

outdoor living spaces at Birchwood at Brambleton

Resort-Style Clubhouse

Birchwood 55+ Luxury ClubhouseThe newly opened Clubhouse in Birchwood at Brambleton has exceeded buyers’ expectations and quickly become a neighborhood favorite.  The 20,000 square foot building with dramatic lake views, sunlit atrium, and comfortable seating spaces welcomes residents to gather for game nights, movies, socializing and so much more. Endless activities abound in this space equipped with indoor/outdoor pools and bars, a health & wellness room, art studio, demonstration kitchen, cyber café, golf simulator, and even designated conference areas. Outside, residents enjoy the multiple wrap-around decks with conversational seating, firepit, pickleball and bocce ball courts.

Birchwood at Brambleton Pickleball players

Resident Testimonials

Don’t just take our word for it, Birchwood residents are eager to share what they love about the community:

  • “We have a wonderful neighborhood. Not only is it beautiful, but the people are even more lovely. So glad we have our new friends here in Birchwood – it has really added so much joy to our lives.” – Iris S.
  • “I wanted an active-adult community, especially a new one that wasn’t already established, for the social life. I love having an elevator, even though I mostly just put my groceries in it and meet it on my kitchen level.” Janet L.
  • “Great place to retire.” Krishna K.
  • “I love how everyone has connected so well in the community and they just love living here, it was worth the wait.” Tom TBirchwood at Brambleton Residents

First Art Class at New Clubhouse Art Studio a Success!

Birchwood at Brambleton Art Studio

Birchwood at Brambleton resident and local artist, Tom Taylor, led the new facility’s first art class this past week with great success. Birchwood residents had a blast painting with acrylics and breaking in the new studio space.

With such a beautiful, light-filled space to call their own, no wonder we’ve received rave reviews about the new clubhouse and art studio space such as this:  “I love how everyone has connected so well in the community and they just love living here, it was worth the wait.”

Take a look below at some of the amazing paintings Birchwood’s residents made during this inaugural class.

class at Birchwood at brambleton clubhouse studio

class for residents birchwood clubhouse

 

 

 


Spectacular New Clubhouse at Birchwood is Now Open

birchwood clubhouse at brambleton 55+ living ashburn vaOne visit to Birchwood at Brambleton will convince you: this is a community you can call home! Beautiful award-winning homes, great location, active folks like you. But if that’s not enough to make you move, maybe our beautiful new clubhouse will.

We think you’ll agree that it may be the most spectacular community clubhouse around and it’s now open to tour on your next visit.

birchwood demonstration kitchen

Indoor and outdoor pools, yoga studio, demonstration/catering kitchen, arts and crafts studio, game rooms, indoor and outdoor bars all architecturally perfected in this 20,000 square foot “residents only” retreat.

Director of Marketing for Birchwood at Brambleton, Kim Adams, says this about the spectacular new community amenity, “The clubhouse with the backdrop of the lake is the gem of the community. There are so many indoor and outdoor conversational areas for residents to enjoy – Also worth noting is the indoor pool, theater room and golf simulator room.”

birchwood clubhouse outdoor pool and terrace Clubs and social events have already started taking place among the early residents, friendships are forming, pot luck dinners, trips to wineries and plays and much more. A community charrette was held where owners were invited to share with the developer the types of clubs and organizations that would be interested in and this list has just about something for everyone including travel, wine tasting, cards, art classes to outdoor adventure!

View a virtual tour of Birchwood’s one-of-a-kind clubhouse here: https://youtu.be/leKRAQAOSPs 

Take a look, then decide for yourself—Are You Old Enough? We hope to see you soon.

Birchwood at Brambleton Information Center (main floor of the clubhouse located at 42840 Beaver Crossing Square, Brambleton, VA 20148) is open daily from 11am – 5pm. Call 703-722-2427 to speak with one of our marketing representatives.

birchwood clubhouse exterior


For some in 55-plus communities, townhouses with elevators meet all their needs

Why a 4-level Private Elevator Townhome works for Birchwood resident, Janet Lynd! 🌿

Source: Washington Post Real Estate By Michele Lerner (May 30 at 6:30 AM)

Janet Lynd walks to her four-story townhouse at the Lifts at Birchwood at Brambleton in Ashburn, Va. The 55-and-older community offers elevators in the units. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

James and Svitlana Harden, residents at the Crest of Alexandria community for people 55 and older, knew someday they would need to leave behind their multilevel townhouse in Alexandria, Va., for single-level living where they could age-in-place without worrying about climbing stairs. The couple never expected to move a half-mile and into another townhouse.

“After I retired from the Treasury Department, we wanted to move to a 55-plus community for the social life,” James says. “But when we looked at some of the developments along I-66, we knew the traffic would be too rough and we would be less likely to walk to places.”

The Hardens found a compromise that meets all their needs: a townhouse with an elevator in an active-adult community within walking distance of a grocery store, a gym, restaurants and a coffee shop.

The Crest of Alexandria has townhouses from Craftmark Homes and Van Metre with elevators, as well as single-family houses from Van Metre with first-floor master suites and condominiums from the Christopher Cos.

Townhouses with elevators are also available at Walhaven at Kingstowne in Alexandria from Miller & Smith and at Birchwood at Brambleton in Ashburn from Van Metre.

“I love having an elevator, even though I mostly just put my groceries in it and meet it on my kitchen level,” said Lynd, seen here in the elevator. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

Townhouses, although relatively rare in most active-adult communities, are appearing more frequently in the mix of housing for older adults in the Washington region.

Craftmark Homes plans to build more townhouses with elevators in 55-plus communities in Virginia and Maryland because they have been so successful at the Crest, says Lori Windsor, sales manager for Craftmark Homes at the Crest of Alexandria.

“Townhouses with elevators may be a significant part of the mix of housing in some markets, but it’s not a widespread trend,” says Paul Emrath, vice president for survey and housing policy research at the National Association of Home Builders. “There’s a small share of people who want age-restricted townhouses with elevators nationally, but it’s an important niche in some areas.”

Townhouses tend to be found in 55-plus developments in high-cost areas where land is scarce and there’s a tendency to build vertically for all types of communities, not just age-restricted ones.

Emrath says most older people remain in the neighborhoods near where they have lived, such as the Hardens. If they’re used to townhouses, they’re more likely to be open to one in an active-adult development.

Janet Lynd, a resident at the Lifts at Birchwood at Brambleton in Ashburn, Va., wasn’t looking for a townhouse when she found her four-story one.

“I wanted an active-adult community, especially a new one that wasn’t already established, for the social life,” Lynd says. “I love having an elevator, even though I mostly just put my groceries in it and meet it on my kitchen level.”

The primary benefit of an elevator is that homeowners can age-in-place without worrying about their future agility.

“Our home buyers may not need or want ‘no-stair’ living in their mid-50s when they originally purchase in an active-adult community, but as they age and mobility becomes a factor, the elevator is a ‘future-proof’ feature that alleviates a move to another home,” says Kim Ambrose, vice president of marketing at Miller & Smith.

Lynd was also grateful for the elevator when she injured her knee and used the elevator for a few weeks until she recovered. Her 2,100-square-foot townhouse has a lower-level media room where her sons can watch football when they visit, a kitchen and living area on the second floor, and two more levels with three bedrooms and two bathrooms.

The addition of an elevator typically costs $20,000 to $25,000, says Mike Sandkuhler, vice president of building operations at Van Metre.

The cost is a prime reason they are less common in areas with lower housing costs.

“If an elevator costs $20,000 or so, that looks a lot different on a $700,000 home versus a $200,000 home,” Emrath says.

At the Crest of Alexandria, the townhouses are priced from $674,990 to $699,990 from Van Metre and from $699,900 from Craftmark Homes. At Walhaven at Kingstowne, the townhouses from Miller & Smith are priced from $601,990 to $646,990. At Birchwood at Brambleton, the prices for the townhouses are $454,000 to $494,000. All include an elevator as a standard feature.

“The challenge of building a townhouse with an elevator is accessibility,” Sandkuhler says. “The elevator provides accessibility inside the house, but you also have to make sure that the front entrance and the garage entrance are flat, with no steps leading into the unit. That means you need flat ground, too.”

Townhouses with elevators tend to be larger than many condos or one-story, single-family houses in active-adult communities.

“You need extra space to accommodate the elevator and yet still have enough closets and large enough rooms,” Sandkuhler says.


Janet Lynd stands on the balcony of her home. “I wanted an active-adult community, especially a new one that wasn’t already established, for the social life,” Lynd says. (Ricky Carioti/The Washington Post)

The Harden’s townhouse has more than 3,000 square feet.

In the Washington area, land is limited and expensive. Townhouses give you more bang for the buck because you can fit more of them on the available land, Sandkuhler says.

“Three-level elevator townhouses definitely allow for a higher density neighborhood than a villa-style home,” Ambrose says. “It also allows for more open space around the homes which the homeowner association maintains, whereas a villa-style home has more land located on the individual’s homesite.”

Lynd was looking for a home where she wouldn’t have to do yardwork or any outdoor maintenance. While most active-adult communities provide lawn care and snow removal, sometimes homeowners need to maintain the landscaping in their yard.

Townhouses make it possible to build more active-adult communities in neighborhoods close to the city.

“Most of our buyers have kids who live in D.C., Arlington or Alexandria, and they want to be near them so that every visit doesn’t have to be an event,” Windsor says. “If they live in Ashburn or farther away, they would have to drive at night and drive in a lot of traffic just to meet for dinner.”

Many of the buyers at Miller & Smith’s Walhaven neighborhood in Kingstowne are already residents of the surrounding neighborhoods.

“They want a lower maintenance lifestyle but don’t want to leave their friends and family,” Ambrose says.

Higher-density construction also makes it easier for residents to live within walking distance of amenities surrounding their communities.

“In our surveys, older buyers tell us they like to be near retail, so clustering houses and townhouses can get you closer to shops, services and restaurants,” Emrath says.

A townhouse doesn’t appeal to every buyer. Although she has a mudroom, a coat closet and plenty of closet space in her bedrooms, Lynd misses having a basement and an attic for storage.

One other drawback for some buyers is that the living spaces are spread over three or four levels rather than just one, Ambrose says.

But some buyers like that aspect so they have space for grandchildren to play or watch a movie while the adults gather on another level.

“A townhouse maximizes your living space,” Windsor says. “For retirees, it’s great to have separate space, too. They can use the extra bedrooms as offices or as a place where one person can read while someone watches TV in another room.”

Some of the buyers at the Crest of Alexandria moved from condos in other communities into a townhouse, Windsor says, because they didn’t like living in an apartment with neighbors on all sides.

Most of all, Windsor says, buyers like the idea of the elevator, which functions as a “bell boy” for their luggage and groceries.

“Seventy percent of our buyers travel often, so it’s great to have the ability to pack and then send the luggage down to the garage and not carry it on the stairs,” Windsor says.

Plus, there’s the cool factor when you tell your friends and family you have a private elevator, once an amenity reserved only for the ultrawealthy.


Community Update Spring 2019

Community Update | Spring 2019

As we wait for the chilly air to adjust to the calendar, development and building activity continues at a rapid rate at the area’s best selling active adult community, Birchwood at Brambleton.

Clubhouse Updates

The new 20,000 square foot stone and hardiplank clubhouse is progressing nicely and the construction crews are busy completing the trails and pier around Lake Birchwood.

Sure to be the heart and soul of the community, the clubhouse will wow you with its wraparound porches, chef’s demonstration kitchen, yoga studio, arts & crafts room and indoor and outdoor pools, not to mention the great views over the lake. It’s slated to open later this summer.

Birchwood at Brambleton Clubhouse Construction progress
 

The Flats Opening soon

You won’t want to miss this! Van Metre’s highly-anticipated single-family model at Birchwood is almost complete, and you’re invited to join them on Saturday, March 23rd from 12-3 PM to enjoy light refreshments while you get an exclusive sneak peek before they open. RSVP to Grace Strother, Sales Manager, at GStrother@VanMetreHomes.com or call 571-340-1150.

Van Metre’s one-level, low maintenance living Flats condominium models are expected to open early April. Choose from a variety of floorplans ranging from 1,000 – 2,000 square feet with up to 3 bedrooms and additional outdoor living spaces.

Van Metre's The Flats
Miller & Smith Crescendo planWinchester Homes Miller & Smith has a unique and limited opportunity for basement homesites on select Crescendo plans in their Encore collection. Contact Catherine Taylor for details at 703-327-0427.

Winchester Homes is taking the stress out of shopping for a new home with their Lock In. Rest Easy interest rate program. Lock in at today’s low rate, or get an even lower rate if rates drop—sounds like a win-win situation! Contact Mary Dixon to learn more at 703-939-1263.

 

In a hurry & can’t wait?
Check out our builders’ Immediate Delivery homes.
Start enjoying the active adult lifestyle in a low-maintenance home and walkable community sooner in one of our builders’ move-in ready homes.

 

New Community Manager

We’d like to introduce Rosemarie Linder to you as the new Community Manager for the Birchwood Community Association at Brambleton. Rosemarie brings a wealth of experience in sales, operations, and customer service, and looks forward to partnering with the residents and Board of Directors to foster a positive, vibrant, and successful community. Rosemarie was most recently the Director of Administration and Services for the Brambleton Community Association.

Rosemarie Linder, New Community Manager
 

Did you Know?
Virginia has one of the lowest real estate rates in the country and we’re the 3rd lowest on the eastern seaboard. Low taxes and spectacular amenities make Birchwood at Brambleton the perfect place to call home!

 

 

Plan Your visit
Our pop-up information center and builders’ models are open daily, 11am – 5pm. New for spring 2019, we are considering offering guided bus tours of Birchwood. If interested, please e-mail Stephanie.lee@brambleton.com.


Birchwood at Brambleton Developer Update – May 2019

birchwood developer update

May 2019

Birchwood Clubhouse &
Grounds Coming Together

The Birchwood Clubhouse and grounds are still under construction, but we are excited to give you a sneak peek! Stay tuned for the Grand Opening details expected later this summer. The Sporting and Formal Gardens are also starting to take shape – are you ready to play?

birchwood sporting garden

South of Shreveport Road, crews are adding the new Stream Valley Trail system adjacent to the Broad Run Flood Plain. We are thrilled to be working with resident Richard LeRoy who is sharing his naturalist knowledge to help us create a signage plan for all to enjoy while utilizing these future trails. Take a bird’s eye tour of the new trail here.

Birchwood truly has something for everyone with 11 models now open and prices ranging from the $300s to $700s! The latest model openings include 3 new Van Metre condos,The Flats, and their single-family home, the Marlowe. Please visit our website for more information.

New residents are settling in and enjoying the Birchwood lifestyle. They have been excited to share their activities with us on social media – documenting the Birds of Birchwood and a day out with their “Birchwood Buddies,” to name a few. Are you ready to live “Life Refreshed?


Birchwood at Brambleton Attends The Ideal Living Resort & Retirement Show

We had a wonderful time at the  Ideal Living Resort & Retirement DC Show this past weekend at the The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner!

Take a look at our display below. Did you attend? We loved meeting potential new homebuyers at the show and explaining everything that Birchwood has to offer! One of our home builders, Van Metre homes, was also in attendance and we had a great time hanging out with the Birchwood team.

Birchwood at Brambleton 55+ Living Community in Ashburn, VA

Many of the attendees were our neighbors from nearby counties such as Arlington, Alexandria and Fairfax and they were pleasantly surprised to learn that Birchwood at Brambleton was just down the road.  Future residents were glad to learn about our 55+ community that was close to “home” which allows for the ability still live near their adult children and grandchildren. Did you know that Virginia also has some of the lowest tax rates on the East Coast? One of the best parts of choosing to retire in Virginia is that you definitely don’t have to worry about any alligators in your backyard either! #VirginiaIsForLovers

People were impressed with the images on display of our 20,000 sq ft clubhouse (under construction now) and excited to learn that it is projected to open later this Summer. Birchwood’s clubhouse will offer amenities such as an indoor and outdoor pool, game room, indoor golf simulator, meeting area, demonstration kitchen, arts & crafts room, yoga and fitness area and overlooks a lake with a fishing pier and is connected to a large network of walking trails to additional amenities such as Pickle Ball and Bocce courts.

Are YOU old enough? We have Condos, Townhomes and Single Family Detached product available. If you’d like to learn more about your options at Birchwood, please call our information center (open daily 11am – 5pm) at 703-722-2427.


The new clubhouse will be the heart of the Birchwood at Brambleton community

A Picture's Worth 1,000 words at Birchwood

Beautiful stone exteriors and modern interior features and finishes don’t begin to describe the beauty and function of our new 20,000 sq.ft. clubhouse under construction at Birchwood at Brambleton.

Brimming with amenities and awe-inspiring views over the lake, the new clubhouse will feature indoor and outdoor pools, game rooms, a wellness/fitness area, yoga studio, a demonstration/catering kitchen, arts and crafts room, indoor and outdoor bars and social spaces. The new clubhouse will be the heart of the community. Completion is anticipated for late summer of this year.


Don’t Tour an Active-Adult Community if it Doesn’t Have These 5 Things

As seen in NewHomesGuide.

All over the region, builders and land developers are creating resort-style communities designed with builders over the age of 55 in mind. Commonly called “active-adult” or “active lifestyle” communities, these neighborhoods are filled with people just like you — active, energetic, young at heart and ready to make the most of a beautiful new home.

As you search for one of these communities yourself, you’ll be presented with a nearly limitless number of options to choose from. But before you ever set foot in one of these sought-after communities for a tour, there are a few things we think you should look for first:

Exceptional Amenities
Without a wide array of amenities, it’s not an active-adult community, so the best ones are filled with everything from swimming pools and walking trails to sports courts and golf courses.

If you can’t live without a fitness center, make sure the communities you’re looking at have the right equipment and space for you. If a lot of golf is in your future, do your due diligence to make sure the community golf course is up to par. Every community will offer something a little bit different, so you just need to decide what’s most important to you.

A Truly Active Community
They’re called “active-adult” communities for a reason, and the amenities available at the community only tell part of the story. The ideal 55+ community is going to have an active social scene of neighbors. It should be thriving with activities, clubs and events.

Although you’ll probably need to take a tour of the community to get a true feel of just how “active” it really is, take a closer look at its Facebook page, Instagram profile, website and online reviews ahead of time. This is the best way to get an early sense of whether or not a community’s energy level matches your own.

Brambleton Town Center

Proximity to Everything You Want
Just because you’ll be living in a community gives you access to great amenities, it doesn’t mean that you won’t ever want to leave to visit friends, family members, your favorite shops or venues.

Be cognizant of what’s around the community you’re looking at and think about how living there would affect your lifestyle. If you’re still commuting to work, this is an obvious one, but if you’re interested in going to the beach or being close to shopping or entertainment centers, take a closer look at how far away everything is from what might be your new home.

High-Quality Home Design
You shouldn’t have to sacrifice a long-lasting, high-quality home in favor of the active-adult lifestyle. Your home should come with all the promises and benefits of a new home, plus the perks of living in a resort-style community.

When searching for an active-adult community, be sure to do some research about the builders actually building homes there. You’ll want to get a sense of what their building practices are in regard to energy efficiency, home warranties, innovative features and high-quality materials.

Flexible Living Options
In addition to a high-quality home, be sure to look for builders who offer a breadth of flexible living options such as single-level living, optional guest suites, open floorplans and more. As you look, think about convenience in everyday living and what features would appeal to visiting friends and family. The top builders and communities will offer a vast array of options and features to pick from.