Looking forward to your retirement is one thing but planning for it is quite another. Whatever your age, a little research goes a long way if you’re looking for the peace of mind of knowing your physical, social and healthcare needs will be met when you retire — and long after.

What’s important now will likely change

Whatever your age, you likely have lofty goals for retirement, but those goals could change as your priorities do.

“As you age, your interests and notions about what is important in life may change,” said Marilyn Walsh, director of marketing and public relations at Baptist Homes Society in Greater Pittsburgh. “For instance, you may have once dreamed of retiring to some tropical island, but now realize you want to live closer to your grandchildren. With that in mind, it is never too early to begin to do your research, and begin saving and learn your retirement options.”

The time is now

If you haven’t started that research yet, it’s never too early. Whether you’re a young professional or your retirement is on the near horizon, careful consideration and financial planning is key to ensuring you live a happy, secure life in your golden years. Among your considerations, you should research different types of retirement communities, including continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), that provide a lively environment, complete with state-of-the-art amenities, as well as skilled nursing and other healthcare services.

Retirement communities aren’t like they used to be

A visit (or several) to today’s retirement communities might make you see them in a whole new light. Gone are the days of stuffy facilities where bingo night is the highlight of the week.

“Like other high-quality CCRCs, Providence Point offers a wide diversity of amenities and programs, and focuses on providing excellent wellness and health care,” Walsh said. “Residents have countless opportunities to be active and engaged in the community, and are encouraged to enjoy life to its fullest on their terms.”

It might keep you young

Speaking of living a vibrant, healthy, life – a CCRC can help you do just that while making you feel anything but old. Among the amenities provided at top CCRC like Providence Point are spacious, private apartments, state-of-the-art fitness centers, pools, saunas, fitness classes, art classes, planned activities, gourmet dining options, transportation services and advanced medical services and care.

Your investment goes a long way

According to Fidelity Investments, it takes an estimated $275,000 for a couple retiring this year just to cover their medical expenses. That’s a 6 percent increase from last year, and the number will likely continue to rise. If you’re smart, you’ll start saving early and gain the peace of mind of knowing that your healthcare needs in later life are covered. One way to ensure your expenses are covered is by saving for retiring to a CCRC, which provides for changing healthcare services as you age.

”Be certain to talk with your financial planner who can help you set and achieve goals,” Walsh said. “The LifeCare agreement available at CCRC communities like Providence Point is similar in many ways to having long-term care insurance. The investment and monthly fees are higher than what you’d find in a senior rental, but the assurance of care as your needs change is a benefit.”

It’s all in the details

As you can imagine, not every retirement community is built or operated alike. That’s why it’s so important to do your research before selecting a community.

“Although first impressions are important, so are many of the details about a senior living community that may not be quite so apparent,” Walsh explained. “Things like five-star ratings with CMS, flexibility and choices in dining, availability of amenities like indoor parking, full-time fitness/wellness staffing and the size and comfort of the residences.”

For more information on Providence Point, visit www.providencepoint.org.

This article is sponsored by Providence Point.


A journalism graduate from Brigham Young University, Kristen Price has experience writing in a variety of fields, including art and culture, health and fitness and financial and real estate services. Kristen has written for USA Today, SFGate and the Knot.