Retiring Abroad: The Villages Florida
Milestone Wealth Management Ltd. - Sep 09, 2019
Florida has been known as a mecca for retirees for many years (think back to Jerry Seinfeld’s dad retiring there in the 90s sitcom). Beautiful weather, well-established retirement amenities, and no state tax are just a few reasons to consider moving
Florida has been known as a mecca for retirees for many years (think back to Jerry Seinfeld’s dad retiring there in the 90s sitcom). Beautiful weather, well-established retirement amenities, and no state tax are just a few reasons to consider moving to - or spending some of your time in - Florida.
I recently was invited to tour a retirement community in Central Florida called The Villages. Located roughly 40 kms NW of Orlando and roughly 130 kms NE of Tampa, The Villages is a retirement community that has grown into a small city of over 120,000 people and around 70,000 homes.
One benefit of the location is that it offers relatively quick access to such tourist attractions as Disney World, Universal Studios and SeaWorld in Orlando, and Busch Gardens in Tampa. While these may not be a retiree’s ideal hot spots, it is perfect for when kids and grandkids come down to visit during those snowbird months. Being in the middle of Florida, one has access to the either the Atlantic Ocean to the east or the Gulf of Mexico to the west. The Villages also boasts 50 golf courses, several recreation centres, swimming pools, pickle ball courts, movie theatres, shopping etc.
Each individual ‘village’ has its own town square with a different theme. For example, of the two that I visited, one was a western theme and one was a New England style theme. Each town square has a stage with frequent live entertainment. The Villages even has its own radio station and daily newspaper.
One of the most convenient features of The Villages is the golf cart road system. Parallel to the main road system is a separate series of smaller, two-way golf cart paths that will take a person almost anywhere in The Villages, not just to the golf courses. Most people don’t drive their car unless they must leave the community, preferring to just drive their golf carts everywhere.
The Villages Florida was highlighted in the Forbes article ‘2018 Best Places to Retire’:
Retirees do not have to purchase a home to enjoy The Villages. If you are interested in trying it out, they offer a short-term rental option including bikes and a golf cart to use:
Longer term rental options are available as well through sites like VRBO and Airbnb.