Let’s be honest — moving is a pain. It probably wasn’t much fun in your 20s and became even more difficult as time wore on. Depending on the direction your life has taken, maybe you’ve moved a lot. Perhaps you lived in a home you loved for 20 years. If you were really lucky, maybe you had a home you lived in even longer, where you raised a family. Whatever your past living situation, the decision to sell your home and move to a retirement community can be a difficult one. Life transitions are rarely easy even for the most flexible of people.
The Knolls understands. We help people deal with these kind of decisions and life transitions on a daily basis. But it’s important to remember, this kind of move can also be an exciting time, full of anticipation and even pleasure. Major changes can be a positive in your life. At The Knolls, it’s not only our mission to make the decision to move as easy as possible for you — it’s our desire to make this move a joyful one — a life transition full of excitement, fun and even pleasure.
Deciding To Sell Your Home and Make the Move
While that may sound like hyperbole, our residents explain it better than we can. Herb, who moved to The Knolls less than two years ago says, “I had a large house in Ossining and was alone. I didn’t want to be alone anymore. So, I decided to do my due diligence and visited every retirement community in the area, nine in total…I was really impressed with The Knolls. But I was terrified of having to downsize my home of 40 years. The Knolls recommended a concierge service that I used. It worked beautifully…I sold my house in four hours. The concierge helped me decide which furniture to bring and even laid out a site plan of where it would go in my new apartment. Moving was much better than I anticipated it would be.”
Downsizing your life can also be a challenge for some. How do you condense 40 years in a large home to 1589 square feet or, depending on your choice of residences, even less? But the truth is, this is a decision most seniors face at one point or another. But less space doesn’t mean you’re not surrounded by your own furniture, family mementos and artwork. And decorating your new home, truly making it your own can actually be exciting. Even better, once you’ve made the move, and made your new home truly your own, that’s when the real fun begins.
I Made the Move — What Happens Now?
Harriet, who’s currently in her third year as a resident of The Knolls thinks about the burdens that have been removed from her life since making the move. “My life at The Knolls has been wonderful. It has removed so much responsibility from my shoulders. I had a house with a pool and land and had to worry if the snowplow man was hired and the blacktop driveway got sealed each year. Now, every worry about home maintenance has been removed. I used to turn the lights out automatically when I left the room but now, I know even if I leave it on, I don’t have an electric bill!”
Richard B. is another resident with no regrets about making the move. “The advantage of living at The Knolls is the community we live in. Whether you want to work out in the fitness center, head out of town on a day trip, or watch a movie, there’s always someone who will want to join you. You can bump into someone in the hall and ask if they want to play Rummikub or bridge. Physically bringing people together in a community enlarges and enhances life in contrast to being alone.”
Astrid N., a retired nurse practitioner who was an Associate Professor at the Columbia University School of Nursing for 11 years, and her husband Ron, who owned his own advertising agency in Manhattan, sold their home in Hartsdale, moving to The Knolls in 2019. “I had attended some events here and knew what The Knolls was like,” says Astrid. “I was ready to move in, but it was a little harder for my husband to give up our home. Now that we’re here, he loves it!”
Astrid was voted onto The Knolls Residents’ Council and then asked to lead a subcommittee. Given her background, she expected to lead a group having something to do with healthcare. Somehow it didn’t quite work out that way. “I was asked to be the chairperson of the library committee,” Astrid says with a laugh. “I didn’t know anything about running a library!”
That didn’t stop her from jumping in. Astrid explains that a large source of the library’s inventory comes from new residents arriving at The Knolls. “Their books are precious to them and as they downsize, they donate their books to the library,” Astrid says. “This generosity allows other people to enjoy them, too.”
Getting Comfortable is Also About Security
People often forget how important socialization can be in terms of not only maintaining cognitive skills, but also in terms of mental and emotional health. Westchester native Shirley, who moved to The Knolls from her home in Peekskill 17 years ago, understands that about as well as anyone. As a retired nurse there are two things about life at The Knolls she considers paramount, socialization being one of the most important. “It made sense to come here first rather than move to a condo,” explains Shirley, who has developed a network of friends who support one another. “I have a far better life here than if I was living in a condo by myself,” she says. Shirley and her friends attend museum and concert excursions, weekly exercise classes and enjoys getting involved in the vibrant programming and resident-led committees.
There’s one other thing about living at The Knolls that gives comfort and support to all our residents — the knowledge that, should they experience any physical or mental decline, The Knolls offers a wide range of healthcare services right on campus. As Dr. Gerry J., herself a cancer survivor explains it, “I was living alone during my first round of chemo. I thought, if it comes back, it would be better to be in a supportive place. Having people nearby for help; having the concierge and drivers help with appointments; having balanced meals cooked for you each day; those are big factors.”
Harriet seems to sum it up for everyone. “There are some people living here who are older than I am. They’ve told me that when you don’t have responsibilities, you live to a ripe old age! So, I hope that living here helps me live as healthily and vibrantly as them…This has been an excellent change.”
If you’d like to learn more about The Knolls retirement community from future friends and neighbors, you can start today. Contact us at (914) 461-4517 to schedule your visit and discover for yourself what a comfortable experience making this move can be.