Tribune Print Share Text

Following his bliss at Ann’s Choice

Retired banker opts for smaller living space, larger lifestyle

Created date

January 16th, 2015
The den in Herb Colyer’s apartment home at Ann’s Choice has become his music room.
The den in Herb Colyer’s apartment home at Ann’s C

Nearness to family, no-hassle winter living, and fewer financial expenses were three of the reasons retired banker Herb Colyer moved last spring from Scotch Plains, N.J., to Choice, EricksonLiving’s retirement community in Bucks County, Pa.

His children both live in Feasterville, Pa., just six miles from Ann’s Choice. His daughter occasionally drops by for supper with him on her way home from work, and he has a standing invitation to Sunday dinner at his son’s. 

He moved in last May in time to watch the campus burst into summer bloom and happy knowing he’d no longer be dealing with house upkeep, lawn care, and snow removal.

Herb had lived in a 3,200-square-foot house, which meant big electric bills and five-figure real estate taxes. 

At Ann’s Choice, his predictable monthly service package covers all apartment home maintenance expenses, property taxes, and amenities like a campus fitness center, all-season swimming pool, and credits for 30 meals each month.

After he moved, Herb made a budget of what he’d be spending at his new address; he listed everything, including insurance and occasional off-campus dining. Herb’s expenses were a huge improvement from his monthly outgo in the New Jersey residence.

A home made for him

Herb at first requested a two-bedroom apartment home with a balcony or patio, but none was available when he wanted to move. 

So Herb was shown an alternative floor plan, the one-bedroom style with den that he now lives in. It suits him perfectly.

The home’s galley kitchen is ideal for preparing any meals Herb decides to cook, the bedroom is spacious enough for a sitting area, the shower and closets are large, and the windows look out on Warminster Community Park next door. 

“My furniture fits in so nicely,” he says. “That was Colleen’s guidance.” 

Colleen Rosica, Ann’s Choice personal moving consultant, came to Herb’s house in New Jersey, measured the furniture he wanted to bring, and drew up an ideal arrangement for his new home. 

One of his matching sofas sits in his great room. The other sofa plus a large wall unit sit in his den, an inviting, masculine-themed retreat that’s stamped with Herb’s personality.

It’s what he’d wanted all along, he says, “a place I could say, ‘That’s my room.’” 

With children so close, Herb doesn’t need a guest room, so front and center in the den sits his pride and joy, a keyboard. “It’s new, and it’s high-tech,” he says. “I had an organ at home that I hadn’t played for five years. I’m going back to playing now.”

Never feeling lonely

Herb moved last year just a month after his wife’s passing. They’d long planned to live at Ann’s Choice, and she encouraged him to go ahead with that. 

It has proved to be the right decision; Herb has never felt lonely at Ann’s Choice. 

Because he likes people and likes to talk, he fit in immediately. “I live on a floor with very nice people,” he says. Herb’s nearby neighbors introduced themselves the day he moved in, and he attended a special dinner arranged so the floor’s newest residents could meet one another. 

He’s made additional friends at the Veterans group and the ROMEOs, a breakfast club of Retired Outstanding Men Enjoying Ourselves.

Herb eats his evening meal with hallway neighbors at a table for ten in Banners Café or makes more new friends by asking to be seated at any table with an empty chair in the Fireside Restaurant. 

When he has meal credits left at the end of a month, he uses them to treat his family to Sunday brunch at Ann’s Choice. They enjoy that tremendously, he says. 

He’s now exploring more of the community’s 150-plus groups and activities. Volunteering at Channel 5, the community’s in-house television studio, tops his list. 

After he left the Air Force 50-some years ago, Herb studied radio and TV production in New York. “But I went into banking instead,” he says. “Now I want to learn about the new equipment and help in some way.”

Following your bliss—that’s what Ann’s Choice is all about.