55-Plus Living Choices

Atlanta Is a Top-Notch Retirement Choice

Metro Atlanta is quickly becoming the go-to area for those 55 years and older, many of whom are seeking refuge after retirement. This is mostly in part due to the amazing 55-plus communities throughout the area that cater to these individuals like Sterling on the Lake in Flowery Branch, Windsong at Seven Hills in Dallas, The Georgia Club in Statham, Soleil Laurel Canyon in Canton and Heron Bay in Locust Grove.

“Ask anyone at Soleil, and they’ll tell you it’s more than a nice place to retire — it’s a community,” says Chelsea Trench with the community, which is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, or about an hour from Downtown Atlanta. “There’s a warm sense of belonging and companionship when you visit. It feels like such a welcoming home because it is home to hundreds of residents who chose this ideal community above all others.”

Much of the same can be said for residents at The Georgia Club, which is a community located not far from outside the University of Georgia campus in Athens. Kathy Phillips, a real estate agent with the development says, “location, location, location” is key to why so many retirees are moving to metro Atlanta. “We travel to Athens quite a bit and by chance, we passed The Georgia Club and decided to take a look,”says resident Bob Lemoine. “We fell in love with the place right away. It has all of the amenities you could ever need in a relaxed atmosphere. I was in real estate for more than 40 years, so I know quality when I see it. The community just fits our lifestyle. It’s also close to Athens, Atlanta, the Mall of Georgia, as well as some property we own in South Carolina. The community is like a dream come true—it really fits all of our needs. It’s the ideal place to live for someone our age.”

Retirees Jimmie and Barbara Walters, who bought a new home in Sterling on the Lake, moved to metro Atlanta from the beach so that they could be closer to family and their beloved Atlanta Braves. “We wanted to be somewhere close to the mountains,”says Jimmie Walters. “We wanted to be close enough that we could hop into the camper and get to somewhere and not have to spend a lot of time on the road. This area is more like the foothills. It is still close enough where I can be downtown within 30 to 40 minutes. I’m a big Braves fan and I wanted to be near the Braves. We’ve got the Gwinnett Braves right down the road (in Lawrenceville).” He also recommends for anyone looking to retire to this area that they pick their niche so that they are moving into an area that fits their lifestyle.

In addition, Georgia being tax friendly has encouraged seniors and retirees to make Georgia their new home. Kiplinger’s magazine recently ranked Georgia as the fourth most tax-friendly state for retirees. “We have recently had an influx of residents from out-of-state who have visited our community and expressed that lower taxes were one of the reasons they purchased in Georgia, and more specifically, our community,”Phillips says. The quality of healthcare options in metro Atlanta aren’t too shabby either, specifically with choices like Athens Regional Medical Center near The Georgia Club, Emory Healthcare, St. Joseph’s Medical Center and Cancer Treatment Centers of America – Southeast.

Gay-Lynn Turner, a sales agent with Windsong, a community located 45 minutes northwest of Atlanta, adds that being closer to grandchildren, an easier lifestyle with no yard maintenance, a sense of community and living near others with similar interests are just a few of the reasons their residents say they love living in Windsong. “Many seniors decide to sell a home they’ve been in for decades,” she says. “It’s a financial decision and possibly a move related to health. What many of our homeowners have seen is their circle of friends dwindle over the years, and they are inevitably happy to discover upon moving to Windsong Manor that this circle of friends is instantly larger. They may opt for less living space but they’re gaining a bigger social life and low-maintenance living. For many, it’s a pretty good trade off!”

Hannah Mullins with Heron Bay adds that for their development specifically, they are seeing new residents because of the low-maintenance lifestyle locale like theirs provide, as well as the resort-style communities, elegant ranch homes, home values, top-notch amenities and access to Interstate 75 and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. “The south side offers a lifestyle worlds away from the hustle and bustle of the city as well,” she says.

So, no matter what the reason may be for selecting metro Atlanta as your new home upon retirement, there’s an abundance of options for where to live, in addition to several reasons why this should be the place to spent the rest of your golden years.