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What are you waiting for?

Six reasons to rightsize your lifestyle now

Created date

April 19th, 2018
Ed Gehres (pictured with his wife Evelyn) says living at Riderwood is like “being on a perpetual cruise.”

Ed Gehres (pictured with his wife Evelyn) says living at Riderwood is like “being on a perpetual cruise.”

There’s no doubt about it—making the decision to downsize for your retirement is a big step. If you’ve lived in your house for many years, you may feel reluctant to leave it.

But, as the more than 2,000 people who live at Riderwood have discovered, when you give up the things you no longer need (like that formal dining room you never use or those dusty boxes in the basement), you gain so much more.

You may already know that Riderwood offers maintenance-free living, 24-hour security, and on-site health care, but what you may not realize is all of the other benefits that come with right-sizing your lifestyle.

Here are six things that people who live at Riderwood cite over and over again as some of the  greatest benefits of moving to the Silver Spring, Md., Erickson Living community.

Finally cross decluttering off your to-do list.

If decluttering and downsizing your house have been weighing on your mind for years, imagine how much more at ease you’ll feel when that project is behind you.

Research shows that clutter causes anxiety and even depression. Living in a space that contains only the things you need and love can feel incredibly freeing.

What’s more, when you move to Riderwood, you don’t have to tackle downsizing and moving on your own. Prospective residents have access to Erickson Realty and Moving Services, a special program that offers complimentary coordination of all realty and moving needs, including downsizing, home staging, packing, and selection of a real estate professional.

You’ll work directly with Personal Moving Consultants Jennifer Hill and Diane Thometz, who can help you decide which pieces of furniture and household items will work best in your new home. They can even design a floor plan that the movers will use to place furniture on moving day—so your apartment feels like home from day one.

Make meals leisurely again.

Ah, dinnertime—all you have to do to enjoy a lovely meal is drive to the grocery store; lug heavy bags into the house; chop, simmer, and bake for an hour or so; and then wash the dishes after you’ve finally eaten.

If you’ve put in more than your fair share of time in the kitchen, then meals at Riderwood will quickly become one of your favorite parts of the day.

With six on-site restaurants serving 25 different menu items daily, you can leave the cooking to someone else. And since residents typically dine with neighbors, mealtime is a lively social hour, rather than a daily chore.

Dianne Shipler actually worked at Riderwood for 13 years before retiring and moving to the community in 2016. She previously lived alone and didn’t really enjoy cooking for one.

“I am surprised I’m having so much fun having dinner with strangers,” she says. “It’s just amazing the backgrounds some of our residents have had, and it’s great to listen to their stories about their backgrounds and what they are interested in.”

Entertain like a pro—without the stress.

As taxing as it can be to prepare a simple dinner for two every night, putting on a feast for the whole family is a major production.

If you love gathering your whole clan around the same table but don’t want the stress of all that cleaning and cooking, Riderwood’s private dining rooms are the perfect solution—residents can reserve the spaces to host guests. Everyone can simply order off the restaurant menu, which means you can enjoy quality time with your loved ones instead of spending the whole party in the kitchen.

Another favorite time for residents to host family and friends is at Riderwood’s delicious weekend brunch.

Trade unused space for valuable time.

You may love your house, but chances are you’ve come to dread all of the weed pulling, gutter cleaning, spare-room dusting, and second-bathroom scrubbing that comes with it. It’s an unavoidable reality: the more excess space you have, the more time you have to spend on maintenance.

At Riderwood, all maintenance—from mowing the lawn to changing the light bulbs—is handled by the professional staff. And with apartment homes that have just the right number of rooms, you’ll no longer have to lose Saturday afternoons to cleaning out storage closets or mopping dusty floors in rooms you don’t even use.

With all of that newfound free time, you’ll get to focus on the things you really love. You can spend more quality time with family and friends and immerse yourself in hobbies you may have neglected for years.

Marketa and David Ebert moved to Riderwood in 2014. Now that they don’t have to take care of a house, they have more time for the things they truly enjoy, like international travel and photography.

“We thought, ‘We’re both healthy, and we’re tired of keeping up the house and mowing the lawn and cooking meals, and there are so many activities here that we can join in,’” David says. “Plus, here we are associating with other people who have the basic philosophy of life that we have.”

Enjoy the comforts of home plus the amenities of a resort.

Sometimes you want to spend the weekend curled up on the couch with a good book. Other days, you’d rather meet friends for a live musical performance or swim laps in a heated indoor pool or take a relaxing soak in a hot tub.

At Riderwood, residents enjoy the best of both worlds—they can retreat to their own spacious homes whenever they feel like relaxing, and when they’re in the mood to socialize, there’s a whole bustling community and host of amenities right outside their doors. From the fitness center and creative arts studio to the performing arts theater and the putting green, many people who live at Riderwood compare the community to a cruise ship.

“When people ask me what it’s like here, I say that it’s like being on a perpetual cruise,” says resident Ed Gehres. “What’s not to like about eating every night in a dining room with white linen tablecloths and flowers on the table, and a choice of six entrees and six desserts? Plus, Riderwood is large enough that there are all kinds of things to do on campus.”

Really get to know your neighbors.

Even if you’ve lived in your neighborhood for years, many of the people you were once close to may have moved away, which can leave you feeling isolated.

At Riderwood, forming friendships with neighbors is easy because everyone is in the same life stage and looking for the same thing: to make the most of their retirement.

Plus, there are more than 250 resident-run clubs and activities, which makes it easy to find your “tribe.” Whether you want to join a book club, connect with other yogis, hone your photography skills, play Ping-Pong, or learn a foreign language, Riderwood has a club for you.