Things to Know if You are Considering 55+ Communities

As the country’s Babyboomers reach retirement age an increasing number of them are exploring the idea of living in an age-restricted 55+ community where there are no children. It doesn’t mean they don’t like children – most of them have children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of their own. But by a certain age we’ve all had enough of reckless bicycling and children playing Hop Scotch in the middle of the street. It’s time to enjoy some peace and quiet – the golden years.

55+ Community in NC


What is a 55+ community?

• By definition, they are age restricted to someone being 55 years old or older. Children can visit, but not live in the community.

• The community is typically gated and private – which means the residents are responsible for all roads, amenities, clubhouses, golf courses, usually through a homeowners association.

• Visiting children must adhere to strict rules within the community that may include:
    – Restricted hours in the pool, clubhouse and restaurants.
    – Certain hours permitted to be outside on the yard and on the streets.
    – The number of nights allowed to stay with or visit a resident.

If you do some research on this concept, you will find that it does come with some sticky issues. First is that when a spouse passes away, the remaining family member may not be eligible to remain as a resident if they are under 55 years of age.

senior communities

Another common objection is that grandparents are not permitted to allow a grandchild to live with them full time. In short, if you are to consider a residing in a 55 or older community, it’s imperative that you research everything you can about the policies, procedures and restrictions plus, you must be prepared to live in a community with lots of rules. There are probably as many people that understand and like rules as there are that don’t.

Communities in Brunswick County are technically not all 55+ restricted. However, on many levels they mimic these communities in many aspects, such as:

• They too are amenity based communities often with pools, tennis courts, golf courses, private beach clubs, walking trails, fitness club, residents clubs, planned activities, etc.

• They might be gated but not all are, which can be a cost savings as when you have a gate, you pay not only county/city taxes but in addition you contribute to a community road slush fund.

• Younger families tend not to be as attracted to retirement communities for several reasons:

    – Younger parents usually like similarly aged children in their neighborhood.
    – The economics are often not in favor of younger families, but there certainly are exceptions to the rule of younger couples purchasing homes in a retirement community in this area.

kids welcome in some 55+ communities

• And while some retirement communities might post some guidelines in public areas concerning young children, children and/or grandchildren are welcome to visit or reside there anytime.

While researching which retirement community best suits your personal lifestyle needs, it’s very important to devote time to the issue of age restricted communities. Let us know how we, at Carolina Plantations, can assist you best with finding your next home.


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