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The better way to ‘age in place’

New Providence community offers maintenance-free independent living

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March 14th, 2017
Joan and Ronald Hoke saw the benefits of trading their old house for a brand-new, maintenance-free apartment home at Lantern Hill. They chose a two-bedroom, two-bath Glenside floor plan to suit their lifestyle and budget.

Joan and Ronald Hoke saw the benefits of trading their old house for a brand-new, maintenance-free apartment home at Lantern Hill. They chose a two-bedroom, two-bath Glenside floor plan to suit their lifestyle and budget.

After 57 years in their Berkeley Heights, N.J., home, Joan and Ronald Hoke had accumulated a lot of memories. But when they learned Erickson Living would be building a continuing care retirement community right around the corner in New Providence, they didn’t let their attachment to a house get in the way of making a move for the better. 

According to AARP, nearly 90% of seniors want to stay in their own homes as they age. Of those who need day-to-day assistance or ongoing health care during retirement, 82% would prefer to “age in place.” Just 9% express a preference for moving to a community where care is provided, and 4% would prefer to move to a relative’s home.

Joan and Ronald fall into the 9%. 

“We were told by friends of ours that it’s better to be five years too early than five minutes too late, and we have told people that. A lot of people are very reluctant to give up their house,” says Joan.

But she and Ronald saw the benefits of trading their old house for a brand-new, maintenance-free apartment home at Lantern Hill. They chose a two-bedroom, two-bath Glenside floor plan, which suits their lifestyle well.

“We both felt it was time. It was getting harder to take care of the yard and the house.” 

Their time, their way

At Lantern Hill, they are free to spend their time exactly the way they want. A full-time maintenance staff, round-the-clock security, professional landscaping, and underground parking take care of the chores and make life more convenient.

An affordable monthly service package wraps all of those conveniences into one monthly payment, so Joan and Ron never have to worry about making repairs or budgeting for maintenance costs.

The monthly service package also includes use of all amenities—like the theater, arts center, and all-season pool—plus a flexible meal plan, utilities, secure Wi-Fi, and ready access to the Internet in each apartment home.

Opportunities to get involved on campus continue to grow as more people move in and new interest groups form.

As for Joan, she has used the fitness center and the pool. She swam for years at the Berkeley Heights community pool. Now having to simply walk down the hall to swim has been yet another convenience. 

Among all these conveniences, Joan says nothing has been a surprise thanks to frequent events hosted by Lantern Hill for its future residents. Joan says she and Ronald knew what to expect.  

Even the food has been as expected: “We think the food is very good. The staff is very accommodating and listen to people who have suggestions and special dietary needs,” Joan says.

Lantern Hill offers a variety of on-site dining venues, from casual cafes to formal restaurants and elegant private dining rooms for catered affairs. The Choice Dining Plan gives residents flexibility for when, where, and with whom they dine. 

Planning for the unexpected

While Joan and Ronald had a pretty good idea of what life would be like at Lantern Hill, no one knows what the future holds. That’s one of the main reasons they decided to move to the continuing care retirement community.

Soon, Lantern Hill will open its continuing care neighborhood, which will offer assisted living and memory care, and eventually long-term care. 

“It’s peace of mind knowing we could use the continuing care if if anything happens. If one or both of us needs help,” Joan says.

“I think our four children felt relieved, happy about it. Even though they would help in an emergency, they are not close enough to respond,” Joan says

Lantern Hill has a number of security features, including emergency medical technicians (EMTs), pull cords in each apartment and throughout common areas, and an on-site medical center, among others. 

Since September 2016, Joan and Ronald have been able to focus on enjoying life in the moment with peace of mind for whatever the future holds. 

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