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Why wait?

Neptune woman chooses to speed up her plans for a worry-free retirement

Created date

August 21st, 2018
Tina Ellis says her two cats, Kylee and Darla (Darla's pictured here), have even become more social living at Seabrook.

Tina Ellis says her two cats, Kylee and Darla (Darla's pictured here), have even become more social living at Seabrook.

When Tina Ellis received a call earlier than she had expected that an apartment home had become available at Seabrook, the first thought that entered her mind was, “Why wait a year?”

She had joined the priority list at the Tinton Falls, N.J., Erickson Living property in 2016 assuming she’d attend events and learn about the community for a couple of years while waiting for her ideal apartment home to become available.

Joining the priority list is simple. Members pay a fully refundable $1,000 deposit and a $150-per-person, nonrefundable application fee. Once this deposit is made, the date is noted as the member’s priority list date. Members are encouraged to select a preferred floor plan that, once available, will be offered to them with the right of first refusal based on their joining date.

“I had no idea Laurie [Williamson, personal moving consultant,] would call me so soon. She said they had a Fremont available, and asked if I wanted to take a look. I figured there was no harm,” Tina recalls.

When she saw the Fremont—a light-filled one-bedroom, one-bath style with large, open kitchen—she knew she didn’t want to let this opportunity slip through her fingers.

She also knew she didn’t need a larger apartment after Williamson conducted a home visit at Tina’s Neptune townhouse.

“After Tina joined the priority list, I scheduled a visit, where I measured furniture she wished to bring, and I planned her new setup on a to-scale magnetic floor plan so she could visually see where everything would go,” Williamson says.

“I realized I didn’t need two bedrooms and two bathrooms; it’s just extra space to put junk in,” Tina says. “Laurie measured everything, and it’s pretty much set up the way I had it at my townhouse. I do have a storage locker here for seasonal decorations.”

Never miss a beat

“I love my Fremont. It’s just enough to keep clean,” Tina says, adding that she doesn’t miss a thing from her townhouse.

“I think I have more benefits here, even without a garage and side-by-side refrigerator. [They're] not something that would have deterred me from coming here. Anything that I’ve missed is negligible. I could say I don’t even miss it anymore,” she says.

With the on-site restaurants, medical center, CVS Pharmacy, market, fitness and aquatics centers, a theater, and several classrooms for meetings and activities, Tina says, “They offer everything.”

Even an on-site playground keeps her grandniece and grandnephew occupied when Tina babysits them twice a week.

“When the weather’s nice we’ll go down to the playground. We’ll walk down to the pond. They’ll chitchat with a lot of people. It’s been wonderful to be able to take care of them,” says Tina.

While the youngsters occupy a lot of her schedule, Tina has found time to participate in some of Seabrook’s more than 120 clubs and activities.

She’s joined line dancing as a way to meet new friends.

She’s joined the pet lovers club on behalf of her two cats, Kylee and Darla (whom she says have become much more sociable since moving to Seabrook).

She’s joined a group that crochets baby blankets.

She’s joined a group that plays Rummikub weekly.

And she’s attended Protestant services at Seabrook, even though her own church is just a mile and a half away.

When considering all the factors that brought Tina to Seabrook in May 2017, she says, “There’s no worries—that’s the big thing.”

That includes worries about bills, stairs, and future care should she ever need it. A convenient monthly service package covers nearly all living expenses including a meal plan. She’s traded worries about falling on stairs for one-level living. And she has peace of mind knowing a full continuum of care is available on site should her health needs ever change.

“That’s the beautiful thing about this place,” she says. “I never have to move again.”