Getting retirement ‘right’ requires significant forethought and planning, as well as taking a long-term view of what the future could potentially hold. When we’re of working age the likes of mortgages and family demands fill our time, and thoughts about getting everything lined up ready for the perfect retirement are pushed to the back of our minds. Then, all of a sudden the day rolls round when retirement is upon us, and very quickly we have to come up with a workable and enjoyable plan!
Careful thought has to be given to money matters primarily; and focus needs to be placed on potential health care and support requirements in the future. Other pressing considerations relate to where you want to live – geographically speaking – and where you want to live in terms of your choice of real estate.
The more attention you begin to pay to planning your retirement, the more questions you will find yourself asking, and the more choices you will realize you have!
In this report we will aim to arm you with the information you need, and cover the considerations you need to think about with relation to perhaps choosing to retire overseas into an age appropriate community or to a care home abroad.
So, are you at an age where you really need to be thinking about how and where you’ll retire? Have you considered retiring abroad but perhaps you’ve come to the conclusion that such a move could bring up too many hurdles for you or your spouse?
Maybe instead you’ve thought about retiring to an age-appropriate community where you’ll live alongside like-minded people with similar interests to yourself? Or perhaps you’re aware that further down the line you may need to move to sheltered or assisted housing?
Well, retiring abroad and moving to live in a care or retirement community are not mutually exclusive options and alternatives. What’s more, there are English-speaking care homes and communities in many stunning destinations around the world where your needs, wishes and requirements can be met and completely fulfilled. So, could retiring to such a community be the right choice for you?
Firstly it’s important to distinguish between the options available. Retirement communities are often simply gated and secure real estate developments where only those over the age of 50 or 55 can purchase or lease a home. Children and grandchildren can of course visit, as can younger friends and family members, but the emphasis is on creating a community that appeals primarily to those who have retired.
The benefits of living in such a community are fairly obvious. You get peace and quiet and are not disturbed by neighborhood teens having parties or neighborhood commuters leaving for work at all hours of the day or night for example. You often get on-site security, and you’re living amongst people who are all of a similar age to yourself, and who have standards and interests similar to your own.
Such communities often have communal facilities and amenities that are of interest to residents such as a clubhouse, sports facilities and even healthcare amenities. One such stunning community in Mexico which retirees might like to consider, and which is marketing itself as an ‘active adult resort’ as opposed to a retirement community, is Luma. It’s a well-being lifestyle community built within the Paradise Village resort area, situated on the beachfront on the outskirts of the city of Puerto Vallarta.
Luma includes everything the discerning and active retiree could possibly want – from gardens and fitness centers to a beach bar and bistro. There are infinity pools, a library, a games room and a fabulous panoramic terrace with views of the Pacific. You can buy in and retire in style to a residential community on Mexico’s shores if you want to be part of a neighborhood of likeminded people who all want to live abroad.
Alternatively, you may wish to explore retirement homes, assisted living or sheltered accommodation options abroad.
These are all alternatives for those who are perhaps a little more vulnerable or frail, or who require basic or limited support on an occasional or on-going basis.
Perhaps an individual resident needs help with cooking and cleaning, or a resident may have been widowed and need the closer emotional care of support workers. Maybe a resident requires mobility assistance, physiotherapy or occupational therapy. All of these requirements can be met abroad in Malta for example.
Malta is a beautiful Mediterranean island with a very strong British influence – which is why the facilities available for international retirees are English speaking. Malta is home to multiple retirement homes which all offer an exceptional blend of discrete support and assistance together with a community feel.
One home, situated in the historic village of Attard on Malta, is Roseville. Its exclusive address on this much sought after island means that residents can be assured of exceptionally high levels of service and care. However, as each individual resident’s needs are assessed and met on a case-by-case basis, the cost of accommodation and care vary depending on the level of assistance one requires. This means that it can be an affordable and accessible option for someone wanting to retire overseas with varied on-site care available.
The home’s range of services include having access to 24 hour care if needs be, with many residents simply benefitting from having a little assistance with cleaning, cooking and transportation for example. You can choose to live relatively independently and get involved with community activities and excursions to suit you, or you can be safe in the knowledge that whatever your social or healthcare requirements, they will be met.
The next option you may wish to consider is sheltered housing, whereby residents have greater independence within their community, but they benefit from subtle monitoring – with interventional support only given when potentially required. One such sheltered housing facility abroad is Chloraka Village in Paphos, a stunning resort on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus; another island with a strong British influence where everyone speaks English!
The community is perhaps a more affordable option that the above referenced retirement home-style solution in Malta, and yet it has a more active support management element than the first option of an open retirement community overseas in Mexico. Residents are typically independent and active individuals who only sometimes need a bit of extra support.
Chloraka Village in Cyprus has an on-site support officer and 24 hour emergency lines of care, but residents largely live within an age appropriate community, benefitting from the facilities and amenities such as terraces and pools, gardens, lounges and organized social events and excursions – but if they fall ill or need any form of help or intervention, they can call for it immediately.
For those who perhaps need greater medical care and day to day support, you have care homes and facilities where whatever care needs a resident may have, they can be fully catered for with the 24-hour a day onsite nursing and medical support staff. Alternatively, you may choose to move to a nation abroad where you know you can get English speaking home help and care if or when required.
As Spain is one of the most popular places in the world with retirees from the likes of Germany, the UK and Northern Europe, it is one nation well-served by such ‘at home’ care providers. Domiciliary care, live in care and respite care are available at home in Spain from multiple providers. One English-speaking example is ARO Care Angels who will help individuals maintain as much independence as possible, whilst giving them all the care and medical support they could possibly need.
It’s a little confusing that different communities and residential resorts or homes around the world will choose to label themselves differently, but if you take a closer look at any potential destination’s literature or website you will soon be able to ascertain if they offer the facilities, amenities and community or care you personally require.
There are many stunning nations in the world where you can find English-speaking communities and care facilities…you just need to determine what sort of facility you would like, and where in the world you would like to retire to.
About the author: Susan Beverley is a writer and editor for Escape From America Magazine and also writes for and maintains Expat Daily News – the expat news blog for EscapeArtist.com. She traveled extensively before becoming an expat herself having found a place to call home in South America where she has lived since 2005. She understands the concerns, needs and difficulties that expats face from first-hand experience and is dedicated to supporting and encouraging anyone who is looking for a new nation to call home. [ send her an email ]