Everything You Need To Know About 55 Over Communities

Everything You Need To Know About 55 Over Communities

Everything You Need To Know About 55 Over Communities

10 June 2020
Real Estate, Blog

To say that Sun City, the first active adult community in the country, was a success when it opened in 1960 would be an understatement. Over 100,000 people toured the complex in the first three days. In the 60 years since, things have only gotten bigger and better in the 55 and over world. 

Do you really need to be 55 to live in an adult community?

Yes, and no. In order to live in an adult community, you need to be at least 55 or, for a couple, at least one person needs to be 55. There are exceptions to this rule, however. 

HOPA, the Housing for Older Persons Act of 1995, states that if 80 percent of the residents are 55 and older, a community can allow the remaining twenty percent to be younger without the threat of discrimination. Each community then sets an age limit for what is commonly called 'junior membership'. Typically the age restriction is set at 50 or even 45 and is clearly written in the community bylaws. 

Can children live with me in a 55+ community?

Children and grandchildren under the age of 18 are not allowed to live in 55 and over communities. They are traditionally allowed to stay for two weeks or less at a time and have restricted access to amenities. This means, for example, that they can only use the pool during specific stated hours. While each community has different rules, it should be clearly spelled out in their homeowner's association handbook or community bylaws. 

Children and grandchildren under 18 are technically allowed to live in the home with you, but many adult communities would assess long term housing solutions on a case-by-case basis. 

Can I buy a house in an adult community and rent it out?

Many 55+ communities are used by snowbirds, or residents of from northern climates that 'fly' south for the winters. This influx of seasonal residents leads to many rental homes in active adult communities. While each HOA has different rules, you can buy a house at any age as long as you rent to people that meet the community's requirements. 

Are gated 55 and over communities boring?

While the common term for this type of community is 55+ or 55 and over, the version more marketers prefer is 'active adult communities'. The reason is simple. There are so many activities for seniors to do within the complex that there is no way to not stay active. From golf communities to bocce ball, there is something for everyone. 

There are many different active adult communities around the country. One of them may have the perfect retirement home for you. If you are interested in moving into a 55 over community, contact a real estate agent near you.

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Getting Real About Real Estate

Buying any piece of real estate is a big undertaking. You need to do your research and know exactly what you're getting into. You also need to hire an attorney, have the place inspected, work with a lender, and collaborate with your real estate agent. When it comes to such a big undertaking like this, it is really important to know what you're doing. So even if you are not planning to buy for a year or two, it is not too late to start learning. Browse the articles on this website to get started, and you'll watch your own knowledge grow.