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Planning Retirement Online

Guide to Retirement Villages - Making the Decision

The previous page of the Guide, How to Choose, made the point that there is an emotional element and an objective one to ensuring that we make the right choice of retirement village. There is no exercise that can be provided for the emotional element because emotions are, by their very nature, instinctive. They are, however, very important. If a retirement village doesn't feel right, then there's no point in looking at any other aspects. We must believe that we are going to like it for the atmosphere, the people and the general ambience.

However, even if we do feel like that about somewhere it doesn't mean that it will suit us. It might not have the things that are important to us: things that are going to make us happy and feel secure in retirement. This is where the objectivity comes in and on the 'How to Choose' page was a list of some of the things that we might want - no doubt you can think of others that will be of importance to you.

Product DetailsOne way of ensuring that these things are taken account of and that we are making the right objective decision is to rank and score the criteria you want from a retirement village. So, do this 4-step exercise.

1. Write down your top 15, say, criteria for a village, e.g. club house, medical facilities available, organised trips etc.

2. Put your criteria in order of importance, with the most important one at 15 and the least at 1.

Guide to Retirement Villages links

3. Score each of the villages that you look at, giving two points if it matches the criterion very well, one if it matches moderately and none if it matches it poorly or not at all. Then multiply the score by the criterion position. So the most important will score 2 x 15, 1 x 15 or 0 x 15. The least important will score 2 x 1, 1 x 1 or 0 x 1.

4. Add all the scores. For 15 criteria, the maximum will be 240. Any village that scores above 180 or so is likely to suit you well, but if you go for the one that scores the highest, it will ensure that many of your important criteria will be met.

Scoring all your potential villages means that you have to research them first, so make sure that your research is thorough:

  • Go and visit each one
  • Talk to as many people as possible
  • Spend as long as possible there
  • Join in an activity if possible
  • Visit the local town or village to see if you feel comfortable there

Doing this will ensure that both the emotional and objective elements of our choice will be taken care of.

Ensure, too, that you read all the other pages in this Guide. You can reach them through the links in the box.

This Guide is written by Retirement Specialist Dave Sinclair supported by members of the LaterLife team. As well as writing on retirement matters Dave is Training Director at LaterLife and responsible for the content and continuous improvement of LaterLife's Retirement Courses.
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