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Choosing a Retirement Living Community or “Chewing Glass” – Your Complete Checklist

Choosing a Retirement Living Community or “Chewing Glass” – Your Complete Checklist

The decision to move to a senior retirement community is not easy. Someone once said to me that “chewing glass may be more enjoyable!” Friends will pass snide comments. Family will chip in with their slant. These opinions not based on your situation but tainted by their own views and feelings.

You and your spouse or partner will be filled with naked mixed emotions. It’s a venture into the unknown. Whatever the circumstances. Deciding to move is emotional and demanding. It’s critical to think carefully through each step. Although there are many, many factors to consider, these ones will give you a good basis for making your decision.

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1. Location

  • Do you have anything specific that is a priority? Will either something you love or something you hate have an influence?
  • Where do you want to live? Consider the distance to shops, public transport, pastime or sport facilities and family and friends. Remember, that as one gets older driving becomes more daunting.

2. The Facilities

  • What style and size home do you want?
  • Is security an issue? For many people it’s an important and growing concern.
  • What level of independence do you desire? How much privacy would you like?
  • Are there recreational activities?
  • Does it offer levels of independence? Some retirement living communities offer greater levels of independent living. While others have a greater focus on community living. Which approach best meets your needs?

3. Financial

  • Are there financial options available which suit you?
  • Does the development have a sustainable business model? Is it financially well-managed?
  • What are the costs now and what are they likely to be in the future?
  • What is included in the costs you’ll have to pay?
  • What financial provisions have been made for the long-term maintenance and upkeep?

4. The Developers

  • Beware of developer promises. There are some shady operators out there who have taken advantage of this market.
  • Is the development still in the growth phase? If so, will the developers be able to deliver on their promises? Consider the developer’s financial resources and their experience.
  • Will the developers be involved in the management of the completed estate?
  • If you are buying off plan. Where will any money you pay be kept until the completion of the estate?
  • What are your options should anything, like the community or frail care facilities, not be completed?

5. Medical Care

  • How close are the nearest medical services? Think carefully about how you could manage deteriorating health.
  • If this is required at a later date, what access is there to ongoing care?
  • Is there a frail care facility large enough for the estate? Remember that there will be growing numbers of “older old” folk requiring support.

6. Level of Input and Involvement

  • Would you like to have a say in the running of the estate? Is there a provision for the community to get involved in the operation?
  • Is there a residents’ committee or trustees’ committee that you can join? Does it work with management to make certain the needs of the residents are sustained at a high standard?

7. Management of the Estate

  • Who will run the estate? What is their experience or qualifications in this field? Do they have experience in meeting the needs of older people?

8. Selling

  • If you decide to leave the village what are your financial responsibilities? Will it be necessary to restore your unit? If so, exactly what restoration would you need to carry out?
  • When you leave, how much money will you receive? When will you receive this money? Often money is not paid until your unit is sold to a new resident.
  • What guarantees do you have that your unit will be sold as quickly as possible? Do you have the option of marketing your unit yourself to speed up the process?

9. Membership and assurances

  • Is the village a member of any organization or associations? If so, what assurance does this guarantee you?
  • Does the association provide a quick and cheap way of resolving disagreements between you and the estate?

10. Legal and binding contract

  • Check the Deed of Sale. Make sure that you understand your obligations with regard to maintenance, refurbishment, general upkeep of the property and medical and ongoing care services.
  • Find out what services the management are legally required to supply on an ongoing basis.

11. The Final decision

  • Make sure that all the boxes are ticked and all the questions answered.
  • When do you plan to move? Is there a long waiting list? Many of the more reasonably priced, well-managed and viable communities have long waiting lists … in some cases up to 10 years!
  • What are other people saying about the place? Do you know anyone living there? Do you know anyone who knows anyone living there? Have you spoken to anyone living there?

These are the many questions and concerns that you will have to wrestle with when making the final decision about moving to a retirement living community. Once you move the rewards can be considerable. Living in a community of like-minded people. Independence to enjoy life with less hassles and hindrances. A truly enhanced lifestyle.

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Freedom to have the time to follow the interests you’ve always wanted to pursue. Enjoying a well-deserved retirement. It’s now up to you. A new lifestyle in a new place … or live with life as you know it?

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patrickmillerd

Consultant

Retirement Community Choosing a Retirement Living Community or “Chewing Glass” – Your Complete Checklist

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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