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Meet the residents

A candid conversation with those who live at Eagle’s Trace

Created date

March 21st, 2018
Visitors to Eagle’s Trace recently had the opportunity to ask residents questions about downsizing, moving, and the lifestyle they enjoy at the West Houston community. The resident panel included (from left) Noel Thomas, Marilyn Black, and Bob Aldridge.

The Eagle’s Trace resident panel included (from left) Noel Thomas, Marilyn Black, and Bob Aldridge.


When it comes to learning more about the lifestyle at Eagle’s Trace, there’s no better resource than the people who live at the West Houston Erickson Living community.

That’s why the sales team recently hosted a luncheon for interested guests to learn more about Eagle’s Trace from the residents themselves.

“The luncheon was unscripted,” says Sales Director Pam Burgeson. “We wanted people to have the opportunity to ask questions of our residents and hear their candid responses about moving to Eagle’s Trace and the lifestyle they enjoy at the community.”

As lunch progressed into coffee and dessert in Stetson’s Restaurant at Eagle’s Trace, a panel of three community members— Noel Thomas, Marilyn Black, and Bob Aldridge—settled into comfortable chairs flanking one wall of the restaurant. Here are answers to some of the visitors’ questions that day.

Q: I've heard about the priority list at Eagle's Trace. What is it and why should I join?

Bob Aldridge: The priority list is the best buy in town. It lets you see what life is like at the community before you move in, sort of a “try before you buy” opportunity.

As a priority list member, you get coupons to come to the community for meals and to try different activities at Eagle’s Trace. It gives you an idea of what your life will be like once you move in.

Noel Thomas: I was on the priority list for 18 months. Every time I visited the community, I asked residents the same two questions. “What do you like about living at Eagle’s Trace?” and “What don’t you like about living at Eagle’s Trace?”

One resident told me, “I have to look around for things to worry about.” That made a big impact on my decision to move. The worry-free lifestyle is appealing.

Sales Director Pam Burgeson: Joining the priority list is the first entrée into the community for anyone who’s considering a move to Eagle’s Trace. Priority list members put down a $1,000 fully refundable deposit, plus a $150 nonrefundable processing fee, to reserve their place in line for the apartment home of their choice.

The date they join the priority list is noted as their priority date, giving them first right of refusal on their preferred floor plans over anyone who joins the priority list after them. Should they pass on an apartment, their priority list status doesn’t change.

Marilyn Black: My husband and I chose a one-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bath apartment with a den.

I think you have to consider what works best for you. Whenit came to downsizing, I had a number of antiques. I kept reminding myself that I’d enjoyed them for many years. Now it was time to let someone else enjoy them.

As far as the move goes, I used a senior move manager recommended by the sales team. It was the easiest move of our lives, even easier than a corporate move we’d made in the past.

Bob Aldridge: My move happened quickly. Jodie [Schroeder, sales counselor] found me an apartment, and Haven [Benoit, personal moving consultant] helped me move in.

Haven has the resources to help with downsizing, selling your house, and moving into your apartment. I used every service she recommended, and by 4:00 in the afternoon on moving day, my apartment was completely set up. Even the pictures were on the walls. 

Noel Thomas: When I joined the priority list, I told the sales team I wanted a two-bedroom apartment, and they showed me several options.

As far as downsizing goes, getting rid of your things is one of the hardest parts of the process, but Haven can recommend senior move managers who help you with every part of downsizing and moving.

Sales Director Pam Burgeson: We offer 71 unique floor plans at Eagle’s Trace. Even if a move isn’t in your immediate future, I encourage you to schedule a meeting with Jodie. She can get an idea of your preferences—the size of apartment you’d like, if you’d prefer a balcony or patio, what floor you’d like to live on, if you’d like a certain view.

Q: What about finances? What convinced you that Eagle’s Trace was a smart move from a financial standpoint?

Noel Thomas: I was living in a 4,300-square foot home in Katy before I moved to Eagle’s Trace.

I sat down and calculated what the house cost me in one month. I was shocked by the number. When you factor in regular maintenance, repairs, and taxes, it costs a lot to own a home.

At Eagle’s Trace, there’s only one monthly fee that covers most of these expenses.

Sales Director Pam Burgeson: The financial structure at Eagle’s Trace has two components: an entrance deposit and a monthly service package. The entrance deposit is 90% refundable, to you or your heirs, and the monthly service package covers utilities, taxes, and maintenance. Our Residence and Care Agreement has all the details.

Bob Aldridge: I looked at four or five other communities before I chose Eagle’s Trace, and when you put the numbers on paper, there’s no comparison. This is much better than a rental because the monthly fee is less [than at a rental community] and we have the option for continuing care right on campus.

Marilyn Black: We did our research before we chose Eagle’s Trace and found that when you compare apples to apples, Eagle’s Trace offers a great value.

The amenities we enjoy far exceed what you’ll find at some other communities. The refundable entrance deposit gives us the assurance of knowing that money will eventually go to our estate. 

Q: You mentioned amenities. What amenities do you have at Eagle’s Trace? 

Noel Thomas: The medical center is one of our most convenient amenities. We have two full-time physicians who specialize in geriatric medicine who practice right here at Eagle’s Trace. We also have the fitness center, swimming pool, bank, pharmacy, salon. It’s all within walking distance of our apartments.

Marilyn Black: I work out every morning in the fitness center. And Noel’s right, the medical center and pharmacy are a great convenience. If the doctor writes a prescription, you can walk right over to the pharmacy and pick it up.

Bob Aldridge: The other part of this equation are the clubs and activities we have at Eagle’s Trace. Currently, we have 120 clubs and activities, and most of them are resident-led. You can choose what interests you and be as busy as you want to be.