Staying in Your Home for Retirement: Expectations Vs. Reality


When it comes to healthy aging, quite honestly, there’s a lot to do. You’re supposed to make sure to keep your body active and your brain engaged all while maintaining your social connections as well. Sure, the benefits to your overall well-being are worth the effort, but retirement is supposed to be a time with less responsibility on your plate, right? Well, it turns out that in senior living you can have your cake and eat it too, so to speak. Here’s how programs like our Vivid Life make keeping active, engaged, and connected easy and fun! 

Benefits of Healthy Aging 

Good things happen when you focus on healthy aging. In addition to feeling better overall, which in and of itself is a win, other benefits of keeping active, engaged, and connected include:  

  • Improved ability to do everyday things ​ 
  • Reduced impact of illness and chronic disease​ 
  • Enhanced mobility, flexibility, and balance
  • Improved sleep
  • Increased energy level
  • Reduced feelings of depression and stress
  • Increased feelings of happiness and self-confidence
  • Reduced risk of cognitive decline 
  • Increased mental adaptability and cognitive reserve 
  • Improved memory recall and problem-solving skills 
  • Improved concentration and attention to detail  

How Senior Living Can Help 

At home, particularly when living alone, it can be hard to stay as active, engaged, and connected as you’d like. From lack of opportunity to lack of motivation to lack of transportation to mobility challenges, and more, it’s tough, we get it! That’s why we created the Vivid Life program in our senior living communities. It’s composed of three parts: Vibrant Body, Vibrant Brain, and Vibrant Connections. Here’s what each entails:  

Vibrant Body We offer amenities such as a state-of-the-art fitness center, a pool, walking trails, gardening opportunities, and even a dog park to help you stay active. A sample of activities includes:  

  • Walking club – Daily walks at different outdoor locations using pedometers to measure steps. 
  • Yoga – At least once per week for gentle yoga, and once per week for mindful breathing. 
  • Fitness classes – At least two times per week using a variety of hand weights, resistance bands, and circuit-type exercises. 
  • Tai Chi – At least once per week with a live instructor. 
  • Non-traditional exercise – Dancing, gardening, etc. at least two times per week. 
  • Physical games and sports – Golf, putting, bowling, croquet, bocce, and ping pong available daily with organized events one to two times per week. 

Vibrant Brain We offer monthly calendars filled with classes, events, creative arts, and enrichment opportunities to help keep you engaged. A sample of activities includes: 

  • Visiting lecture series – Twice per month with topics such as cultural, historical, local interest, career-oriented, etc. 
  • Creative art series – At least one per week with a theme that runs 3-6 weeks, such as poetry writing, storytelling, painting, digital photography, etc. 
  • Learning series – At least three times per month with an emphasis on learning something new such as foreign language, sign language, technology, hobbies, etc. 
  • Games – At least one time per week and may include poker, bridge, Scrabble, etc. 
  • Mindfulness – A meditation class once per week and gratitude discussion group twice monthly. 
  • Church service – At least once a week through visits by local churches. 
  • Stress reduction – At least once per month class that offers deep breathing exercises, nature walks, music appreciation, spa-type treatments, etc. 

 Vibrant Connections We offer resident-led clubs, social events, outings and volunteer opportunities for any interest to help you stay connected. A sample of activities includes: 

  • Outings – At least twice per month and may include going to concerts, art shows, museum visits, theatre productions, etc. 
  • Intergenerational programming – At least once per month and focuses on building relationships between young adults/children and residents. 
  • New resident welcome party – At least once per month to formally introduce all new residents, and includes ice breakers, social games, etc. to encourage connection. 
  • Philanthropic program – At least once per month provide residents the opportunity to give back to the community, such as volunteering for a local food bank or pet shelter. 
  • Resident-led clubs – May include game clubs, professional clubs, common interests, etc. that meet at least monthly.  

What’s more, it’s all right outside your door (or transportation is provided offsite) and all in a supportive environment with home maintenance, housekeeping, and restaurant-style dining freeing your time to make it even easier to stay active, engaged, and connected. 

Learn more about Vitality Living’s Vivid Life programs. Or find a Vitality Living community near you today to schedule a tour. 



It’s common for people nearing retirement or already retired to believe the best place to live is in their home, but that may not always be the case. Although there was a time when retirement meant slowing down, seniors today are looking for more from this time in life like opportunities to stay active, socialize, and have fun with fewer responsibilities vying for their attention. As such, the realities of life at home may not be what you expect (or ultimately want out of retirement). Here’s what to consider.

Assessing Living at Home in Retirement

Let’s start by assessing your current situation at home in terms of your needs and wants for retirement right now, as well as in the future. Consider these questions.




Are you tired of these daily responsibilities? 



Meal preparation 









Yard work 



Home maintenance 






Do you require daily assistance in these personal care areas? 






Daily grooming 






Medication reminders 



Medication administration 



Would you like to have more time and/or access to these activities? 



Spending time with friends 



Spending time with family 



Attending religious services 



Participating in favorite hobbies 



Shopping and dining out 



Attending cultural events 



Artistic pursuits 



Lifelong learning 






Fitness classes, swimming, and/or a gym 



Spending time outdoors 



Comparing Your Options in Retirement

If you’ve answered mostly ‘yes’ to these questions, then you’ll next want to consider whether or not these needs and wants can realistically be achieved at home. Or if an option such as senior living may be better able to deliver on your expectations for retirement. To help, here are some areas in which senior living can offer you more in retirement.

  • More Freedom – In senior living, home maintenance, weekly housekeeping and linens, as well as restaurant-style dining and transportation are provided for you, so you’ll no longer have the burdens of home ownership and chores weighing on your shoulders.
  • More Connection – It’s so much easier to stay connected in senior living because we offer a full calendar of activities, clubs, and outings from which to choose. Not to mention plenty of beautiful common areas in which to socialize and/or host family and friends. You don’t have to do anything other than enjoy the options available to you!
  • More Purpose – At home, it can be hard to find purpose in retirement, but senior living offers a range of options to keep you engaged through educational and enrichment programs, as well as opportunities to volunteer, continue hobbies, and find new pursuits.
  • More Convenience – This is one of the biggest draws to senior living as communities like ours offer amenities like dining venues that include a bistro, pub and restaurant, hair salon/barbershop, concierge services, pool, library, dog park, and walking trails on beautiful grounds. While you may have some of these options in your neighborhood at home or nearby, it’s rare to find them all right outside your door as in senior living.
  • More Focus on Healthy Aging – Our senior living communities also focus on healthy aging with wellness services, a state-of-the-art fitness center, yoga, and tai chi classes, onsite spa and salon experiences; even chef-created menus that use fresh, locally-grown ingredients for meals that are nutritious and delicious! This makes it much easier to stay healthy and active.
  • More Peace of Mind – Senior living communities often have multiple living options on the same campus including: active adult living, independent living, assisted living, and memory care. This provides peace of mind that your needs will always be met regardless of how your health may change during retirement, not to mention an easier transition since you’ll be able to remain in familiar surroundings and maintain continuity in care. Plus, our communities are designed with accessibility features, and emergency response systems which are often extra expenses at home.

For more information, download our Complete Guide to Choosing Between Senior Living Options. Or, contact us today to schedule your virtual tour!

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