Room for a boat and caravan a must for new residents Pam and Martin
Through personal experience with their own parents, Lake Macquarie residents Martin and Pam Hall have long been aware that downsizing from a large stand-alone family home and moving to a retirement village in later life is a very wise and beneficial choice for seniors to make.
Now in their mid-70s, they were looking for something close to their friends and the areas they knew well, but they were also looking for a well-designed and modern retirement village with plenty of space and privacy and an area to accommodate their caravan and boat.
“My mother moved into a retirement village in Sydney and lived there for many years, so Martin and I both knew exactly what living in a retirement village was like and understood all the benefits and advantages”, Pam reflects. “With the security and freedom from ongoing house upkeep and maintenance that a retirement village provides and the many friends she made there, my mother used to say her only regret was not moving far earlier than she did.”
Meanwhile, Martin’s parents decided to remain living in their family home into their older years until it was time to move into a nursing home.
“The older and frailer you get, the harder it becomes to go through the process of downsizing and moving to a place far better suited to your needs than a stand-alone family house”, Martin says. “I know many seniors find the thought of downsizing too daunting and keep putting the decision off, but the sooner you move into a retirement village community while you’re still active, healthy and socially engaged, the more you can enjoy the community facilities on offer, meet new people and make new friends.”
The Halls visited and inspected a number of retirement villages in the Lake Macquarie area over several years to get an idea as to what was on offer. None of the villages they visited greatly appealed – until the couple toured Catalina in mid-2019, at which point they decided straight away to move there.
“The brand new, architect-designed houses here at Catalina are so modern, well-designed and spacious, unlike houses in older villages we visited which are more like little boxes all on top of each other”, Martin says. “Wherever we moved, we also wanted to be able to bring our boat and a caravan with us and, unlike other villages, that was no problem at Catalina, with a double garage and driveway outside our home here providing plenty of parking and storage space.”
Keen caravanners, Martin and Pam say moving to Catalina means they can go travelling whenever and for however long they wish, enjoying total peace of mind in knowing that their new home in the village will remain safe and secure with all lawn and gardening upkeep attended to by village staff.
Both Pam and Martin have slotted right into the Catalina community enjoying weekly Happy Hour get-togethers in the community centre, and getting to know other residents.
“While Pam and I realise everybody’s situation is different and that there are different circumstances in family life, we’d say it’s well worthwhile for all retirees to consider this type of lifestyle if it fits their own personal criteria. Downsizing from a family home to a modern retirement community like Catalina is a lifestyle change we both thoroughly recommend.”
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