Making new friends after a move to a senior community

by the Editor, SeniorInsider | Jun 02, 2011

There is no doubt that moving can be a challenging event in anyone’s life.  The physical move itself can be hard, but more often moving is not as difficult as the adjustment to the new home, new locale and new neighbors.  It can mean starting over, including finding where to get your hair cut, where to take your dry cleaning, where to shop, and where to go for all your needs for everyday living.  And then there is the matter of meeting new people and making friends in your new location.  This can sometimes be easier for older people moving into a senior citizen community.

Moving to a Senior Citizen Community


They are known by a variety of names, ranging from senior citizen community to retirement community to over-55 communities.  Whatever they are called, they are communities that are built around the concept of providing housing to the older members of the population.  This does not in any way mean that these are dreary places where older people go to waste their senior years.  In reality, it is quite the opposite.

Many of the senior citizen communities started to spring up as planned communities built with amenities specifically to attract people in their senior years.  There are often clubhouses, golf courses, swimming pools and other activities all built within the boundaries of the community for the sole use of the senior residents.  In reality, many of these senior citizen communities that have sprung up have strict age guidelines that must be met by all residents.

Advantages of a Senior Citizen Community


There can be many advantages to moving into a senior citizen community when you reach retirement age.  Since all of the residents are generally of the same demographics as you are, the chances of finding people with similar interests is good.  In addition, since many of these planned communities have group activities, a clubhouse, and social events, it is much easier to begin to meet new people once you are settled into your new home in the area.

Besides all of the planned activities that encourage your participation when living in a senior citizen community, you know that your neighbors are going to be in your same age group.  This can make it much easier to have something in common with your neighbors.  Generally, people who choose to retire to a planned senior citizen community do so for the express purpose of being surrounded by people similar to themselves.

Whether coincidence or not, many of these communities built specifically for seniors are located in the southern part of the United States where the weather is generally warmer and nicer for longer periods of time during the year.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with choosing to live in a senior citizen community in a location where the sun shines more than three hundred days a year!

Making the Decision to Move to a Senior Citizen Facility


There can be a difference between a senior citizen facility and a community that caters to senior citizens.  While the community is generally a grouping of residences built around community activities, a senior citizen facility may be a single building or small grouping of buildings within a larger general population community.  Making the decision to move to a senior citizen facility is often thought of as moving to a retirement home or, in some cases, to an assisted living facility. 
These can be very different from living in your own home within a senior citizen community.

A Senior Citizen Facility Has a Variety of Advantages


As with the communities that cater to seniors, you can find a senior citizen facility that differs depending on your needs or lifestyle.  For example, there are high-rise apartment buildings in larger cities that are senior citizen facilities.  Each resident has his own apartment, but might get meals in a community dining room.  The ability to live on your own without having to worry about cooking and cleaning can be an advantage.  Again, in this type of senior citizen facility, there are often group elderly activities that encourage you to interact with the other residents.  This can make the process of making new friends easier for those who are a bit shy.  It is only natural to have something in common when living in a facility that has residents only in your age group.


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