A closer look

Father-daughter discover Wind Crest offers exceptional living at an affordable cost

Created date

May 28th, 2019
Bill Snow was hesitant to move to Wind Crest for fear of the community being out of his price range. Now, he’s living a vibrant, maintenance-free retirement and loving every moment.

Bill Snow was hesitant to move to Wind Crest for fear of the community being out of his price range. Now, he’s living a vibrant, maintenance-free retirement and loving every moment.

If Bill Snow had listened to his initial assumptions about maintenance-free retirement living at Wind Crest, he would still be living alone, maintaining a large house, isolated from social interaction. Instead, he now plays pool every day but Sunday with his buddies and can’t walk down the hall without running into a familiar face.

“I didn’t think I could afford it,” Bill says of his initial reaction to the Erickson Living community in Highlands Ranch, Colo. 

It’s easy to see why he would think that—residents live maintenance-free in a spacious, modern, one- or two-bedroom apartment home and have access to state-of-the-art facilities and amenities. Yet, Wind Crest’s sound financial structure makes it a smart retirement living option for many.

“Not all retirement communities operate on the same business model,” says Karen Lux, director of finance at Wind Crest. “There are a number of financial structures, in addition to lifestyle and amenity options, among the communities here in the area.”

In the Denver metro area you’ll find 55-plus communities with detached homes and neighborhood amenities, senior apartments that operate on a rental basis, life care communities, and fee-for-service continuing care retirement communities like Wind Crest.

Life care vs. fee-for-service

Those who live at a senior rental community don’t buy in to the property. They pay one monthly fee to cover their rent and use of on-site amenities.

Life care communities, another option, require a long-term, upfront financial commitment. Residents pay a substantial fixed monthly payment that remains the same as they progress through levels of care.

In contrast, Wind Crest operates on a fee-for-service basis. Community members pay for advanced levels of care only if and when they need it. It’s a financial model that’s both affordable and secure for most retirees. 

There are two basic components to the financial model at Wind Crest: a 90% refundable entrance deposit and a monthly service package that covers most utilities, 24-hour security and emergency response, flexible dining plans, scheduled shuttle service, trash collection and recycling at your door, and all maintenance and repairs (see the Residence and Care Agreement for all the details).

‘Value player’

“When you look at what’s out there, we’re a value player in the market,” says Lux. “What you get for what you pay is substantially more than you’ll find at other communities.”

That’s the way Bill and his daughter Dee Koinzin felt when they visited Wind Crest. “We went all over the city, and the difference between the kind of reception we got here with all the activities and dances and concerts was much more than any of the other places we [visited],” Dee says.

Now, Dee watches her father enjoy his life. Aside from his daily billiards games, he attends nightly happy hours and dinners with friends, takes part in campus events, and has served as an ambassador to others considering a move to the community.

“We have stores, restaurants, movies, exercise rooms and classes—everything you would find in a resort,” Bill says.

When he’s in the mood for downtime, he retreats to his one-bedroom apartment home, where he settles on his sofa in the sunlight with a good book and music “turned on real low.”

With a kitchen that opens to the living area by a breakfast counter, a master bedroom and bath off to the right, and his own washer and dryer, Bill’s Brecken-style apartment suits him. “We wanted something open and light and happy and bright,” Dee says. It is most certainly all of those things, especially when occupied by someone as happy and smiling as Bill.

As Dee’s husband Tim says, “For someone who didn’t want to move out of his house and move here, he’s doing great.”

Bill agrees: “It’s really great living here.”