Plan ahead now

You don’t have to spend another winter in your house

Created date

July 20th, 2018
Darla (left) and Ben Schwartz say one of the best things about living at Wind Crest is that someone else does the snow shoveling. Meanwhile, their active lives continue uninterrupted.

Darla and Ben Schwartz say one of the best things about living at Wind Crest is that someone else does the snow shoveling. Meanwhile, their active lives continue uninterrupted.

Summer is in full swing but not everyone has shaken that winter chill. Friends of mine returned home from a New Year’s trip to burst pipes that wreaked havoc on their home and lives for months. In late April, they were still fixing drywall, painting, and waiting on replacement furniture.

Personally, my husband and I spent upwards of $600 to $700 every month on heating bills from December to March.

While winter may be furthest from your mind in August, real estate experts say now is the time to list if you want to avoid these burdens and don’t want to spend another winter in your house.

Shed winter worries

“The fall real estate market heats up in August because people want to move before the holidays and before cold weather hits,” says Beth Brandenburg, personal moving consultant for Wind Crest, an Erickson Living retirement community in Highlands Ranch, Colo. “Even though the weather is relatively mild in the Denver area, we have people moving from all over. And even in Denver we can get a dump of snow at any time.”

While houses continue to sell any time of year in the current market, Brandenburg says people moving to Wind Crest are eager to shed the responsibilities of homeownership and maintenance prior to winter.

“Frozen pipes, high heating bills, or a faulty hot water heater, not to mention the health and safety risks of icy sidewalks and front steps, are all reasons to choose maintenance-free living,” Brandenburg says. “You shouldn’t have to worry about those things in retirement. You should be out doing things you’ve put off for years because you were busy working, raising a family, and taking care of a house and yard.”

Just as Brandenburg says, Lorna and Bill Warmath were looking to trade time-consuming chores for hobbies and fun activities. “There were several reasons we started considering making a change. For one, we were tired of all the responsibilities that come with being a homeowner,” Bill says.

As excited as they were to move to Wind Crest, there was just one downfall—they had to spend one more winter in their house. “We’re excited about it and just wish we didn’t have to go through another winter in our home shoveling snow and traveling on icy roads, but time will pass,” they said in an interview with the Tribune in August 2016.

Coming up on their second worry-free winter, they look forward to watching the snow fall from the comfort of their apartment home or the cozy lounge in The High Line Overlook Clubhouse.

Make the most of every day

“We had a big house, and it was getting to be too much for us. We wanted to take it easy—no lawn mowing, no shoveling,” says Darla Schwartz. “Plus, our refrigerator was about to die, so we wanted to get out before that happened.”

She and her husband Ben moved to Wind Crest from Evergreen, Colo., in 2016 and have gotten very involved in community activities, introducing several interest groups of their own.

Wind Crest provides maintenance-free, amenity-rich retirement living with an active, vibrant lifestyle in the Denver area.

Its under-one-roof design enables people who live there to stay active and engaged throughout the year, regardless of the weather.

Residents can dine out every night with friends in one of Wind Crest’s six on-site restaurants without having to bundle up and drive in snow or ice.

They can swim laps in the heated indoor pool or get 10,000 steps—or more—by walking the community’s indoor hallways; glass-enclosed walkways connect every building.

They can join their neighbors in a current events discussion, art class, or music group.

They can live life and make the most of every day.

And the cost of enjoying this maintenance-free community is all bundled into one convenient monthly fee, which averages about the same or less than living in a single family home, according to Darla.

“Before we made a serious decision, I wrote down all of our monthly expenses in the home for a year and the expenses here, and truthfully, it’s costing us much less to live here than there,” she says.