Retiring in Maine

HG residents Marianne, Rob, and HG Design Coordinator Sandra

Many folks are retiring in Maine, or moving here while still working and thinking toward the future. Exploring options may be confusing. Many search online for “55+ Communities,” “Active Adult Communities,” or “Retirement Communities,” not knowing some of the differences.

Oftentimes, people in their 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and 70’s are ready to move, or plan to move in the next two or three years, and their research drives them toward some of the many fine Retirement Communities in Maine and around New England. But when they start visiting places, they do not see any of their contemporaries, and they find a lot of services that they do not want or need.

What they are REALLY looking for, whether they know it yet or not, is an Active Adult Community.

55+ Active Adult Communities

HG residents Michael, Theresa, Jean, Rich, Linda, Ed, Linda, and Jim in an HG home

When people first consider the term “Active Adult” they may confuse the concept with housing for the elderly or traditional senior living. 55+ Active Lifestyle Communities are age-qualified planned developments that offer independent, relatively maintenance-free living to residents primarily aged 55 and over.

They promote friendliness, convenience, and an active social and cultural lifestyle along with some amenities. They may be nearby excellent medical care, but they do not offer assisted living.

55+ Active Adult Communities vs. Retirement Communities

Senior Housing is one of the largest segments of the U.S. Housing Industry. Within the industry there is a clear differentiation between 55+ Active Lifestyle Communities and Retirement Communities.

“At its most basic level, ‘active’ means independent, so 55+ Active Lifestyle Communities offer no assistance with daily living activities, such as meals, medication, housekeeping, programmed entertainment and personal care,” says Jane O’Connor, the principle of 55 Plus, LLC and an internationally known expert, on the ever growing market niche of Senior Housing.

Retirement Communities

Highland Green is not a Retirement Community. “In the industry, a Retirement Community refers to more of a traditional continuum of care environment with progressive care living, group transportation, congregate dining, medical care, and management employed activities coordinators. These communities tend to cater to the more needs-driven resident who has waited until they are in need of services to enter the community,” says Jane.

“Nationally, the average age in Retirement Communities is now 83-86 years of age. The traditional market segment for Retirement Communities is within a 20-mile radius of their campus. 55+ Active Lifestyle Communities attract customers from a much broader range of ages and geographic locations. They are seeking a new adventure for the next stage of their life. In short, it is all about lifestyle.”

Highland Green 55+ Active Adult Community

Highland Green resident and HG hockey team captain George

This means that 80% of its households must have one resident above 55 years of age, and there are no permanent resident under the age of 19.

HG is not a medical, service-driven, needs-based environment. HG Management simply provides marketing, communications, property management, grounds keeping, and certain maintenance service on behalf the HG cooperatives and their shareholder-owners. It is a move of choice, convenience and community.

Since HG is not by definition a traditional retirement community, it attracts residents from a much larger geographic range (31 U.S. states and counting!) and much wider range of ages. People have moved here in their 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.