Peabody, MA -- When Gail Thompson decided to move to Brooksby Village, an Erickson Living developed and managed senior living community in Peabody, Mass, in June 2015, her good friend Lynne Holton took note.
"I had breakfast with Gail one morning, and she told me she was planning to move to Brooksby," says Lynne. "I was a bit stunned, because she was on the younger side, active, and, in my mind, not yet ready to move to a retirement community."
But the more Lynne considered her friend's decision, the more it piqued her interest.
"I was generally aware of Brooksby, but I didn't know anyone who lived there," says Lynne. "Looking back, the thought of something like Brooksby was tucked away in the back of my mind. As a social worker, I've witnessed what hap-pens when people don't plan for the future, and I wanted my husband and I to be in a position to make decisions for ourselves."
Lynne asked Gail if they could really talk about the reasons she chose to move, and Gail was happy to share her story.
"I didn't have any intention of moving to Brooksby, but I tagged along with a friend to a sales luncheon in the spring of 2014," says Gail. "There was something about visiting Brooksby that made me think. At the time, I lived in an older house in Gloucester that needed a lot of work. I liked the idea of moving while I was healthy and could enjoy the lifestyle at Brooksby."
Located on 90 picturesque acres, Brooksby Village offers spacious, maintenance-free apartment homes, all with easy access to a host of amenities and services, including a swimming pool, fitness center, restaurants, and a convenient on-site medical center. There are over 100 clubs and activities to keep body, mind, and spirit thriving, plus the full continuum of care offered on campus. Since her move, Gail has started her own sewing business from her apartment at Brooksby Village and considers her new home her "sanctuary."
"I've never looked back," says Gail. "I couldn't be happier, so I was glad to share my experience with Lynne."
Gail and Lynne, friends for 25 years, found plenty to talk about.
"The conversations continued over several years," says Lynne, who was still living in Ipswich with her husband Will. "Gail and I saw each other three or four times a year, and I could see how happy she was living at Brooksby. She opened the door and made me feel comfortable meeting with the sales team. I'm not sure I would have taken that step if we hadn't had all those conversations."
Trusted source of information
Word-of-mouth recommendations are one of the primary reasons people choose Brooksby Village, according to Sales Director Suzanne Davis. "Many of our residents discover Brooksby thanks to the suggestion of family or friends who live here," says Davis. "When a prospective resident knows just one person at the community, it can make all the difference in their decision to move."
Research supports the powerful influence of a friend's good word. According to the Nielsen Global Trust in Advertising Report, recommendations from friends and family are the most credible form of advertising, with 83% of respondents saying word-of-mouth recommendations influence their purchases.
Will and Lynne Holton joined the priority list at Brooksby in late 2018, putting down a fully refundable $1,000 deposit to reserve their place in the line for the apartment home of their choice.
Like Gail, Lynne says they also heard from friends who were surprised by their decision to move to Brooksby.
"We loved our home in Ipswich, but we also wanted to plan with the future in mind," says Lynne. "We felt like moving to Brooksby was the right decision for us."
The couple moved into their two-bedroom, two-bath Lancaster-style apartment in December 2019, and now they're sharing their experience with others.
"Will started talking about Brooksby with a woman in his yoga class at the YMCA in Ipswich, and she just moved to the community in September," says Lynne. "Now we're the ones sharing about Brooksby Village.
Photo: Lynne Holton, left, moved to Brooksby Village with her husband Will thanks to the recommendation of her friend Gail Thompson, right, who's lived at the Peabody community since June 2015
About Brooksby Village: Brooksby Village is one of 20 continuing care retirement communities developed and managed by Erickson Living® and is situated on a scenic 90-acre campus in Peabody, Massachusetts. The not-for-profit community, located in Essex County, is home to 1,700 residents and is governed by its own board of directors, affiliated with National Senior Campuses, who provide independent financial and operational oversight of the community. Additional information about Brooksby Village can be found at BrooksbyVillage.com.