For older adults, maintaining a sense of community is often a significant concern. Retirement or the absence of daily work interactions, coupled with adult children moving away, can lead to feelings of isolation. This is further exacerbated for seniors who no longer have the ability to drive and may become housebound, losing their connection to the world around them. If you find yourself in these circumstances and worry about the practical and emotional implications of social disconnection, senior cohousing may be an ideal solution.
Cohousing refers to private communities where residents live in clusters of homes or condos close to one another. Also known as “intentional neighborhoods,” this type of living is built on residential participation, companionship, inclusion, and trust.
Cohousing embraces community involvement as a lifestyle. Residents share everything from mealtimes to cleaning and laundry duties. It’s also common for residents to partake in classes, entertainment, and other group activities regularly.
Senior cohousing communities are specifically designed to foster strong bonds and a sense of community among residents. These communities provide an opportunity for active seniors to join a close-knit group of individuals who share common interests and values. Living in a senior cohousing community allows you to engage in social interactions with fellow residents, both inside your own private home and within the common areas of the community. The physical layout and design of these communities facilitate easy interaction and encourage neighborly connections.
These communities often offer a range of shared activities and resources, such as craft classes, woodworking workshops, day trips, and extended travel opportunities. The emphasis is on creating an inclusive environment where individuals can bring their own talents, skills, and abilities to contribute to the community.
Nearly one-fourth of adults over the age of 65 are considered to be socially isolated. For seniors nearing retirement (or who are already retired), cohousing can be an exceptional solution to feelings of loneliness or loss of self-worth.
Cohousing is for seniors who want to mesh aging in place with community living. It’s choosing to share retirement with friends. Seniors who are involved in cohousing enjoy unplanned social moments that come from being close to and knowing all their neighbors. Residents are always within arm’s reach of a friend or helping hand, while also living privately in their own home.
Most condos or single-family homes can be purchased at regular market prices. Many cohousing communities have shared expenses, much like homeowner's association fees, that help pay for amenities, maintenance, and meals. Cohousing can be economically and environmentally efficient, as residents may grow their food and share transportation.
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