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Opinions wanted: old-car friendly retirement communities?


Reatta Man
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OK, maybe it is the daily grind getting to me, but I am starting to think about where I want to retire in 3-6 years.

I've looked at the Web site for The Villages in Florida; beautiful area and some reasonably priced homes. However, like many newer homes, the garages and lots seem small. So, it doesn't look conducive to building an extra building for a shop and storage barn.

Just wondering if any of the forum members have moved to an age-restricted community that is friendly to our old car hobby?

Anyone moved to a community that is giving you grief about "that old piece of junk" in the garage?

Anyone moved to a community that seems to go out of their way to be friendly to our hobby?

Experiences and lessons learned would be appreciated.

Joe

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Joe, back in 1994 when I moved to Daytona Beach the biggest problem I had was finding a house with a garage big enough for my '62 Buick. Most garages there are very small. The first thing I always checked before looking in the house was the size of the garage. My realtor thought I was nuts.:D I did happen to find a very nice house in a beautiful sub-division called Georgetown with a garage big enough and then some. It was a some what restricted community which was good in a way to keep people's property in order. As time went on I found other car guys also lived in that area. I used to work on my cars without any issues.

The place I have now is in the Port Orange area which borders Daytona. It is an age restricted community with mobile homes on your land. When I retire I want to spend the bad winter months there. It has a carport that I plan on converting into a garage in time and probably keep a car there. Most areas of Florida have a number of car collectors in them. Some are more restricted than others.

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Just be sure to completely read the HOA covenants with a magnifying glass and a fine toothed comb. Even if the majority of neighbors are understanding, it only takes one to find the bylaw that prohibits working on your own car at your house.

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I dunno you better be careful at "Thuhhhhh Villllllllaaagehhhhhhhhssss" you might run into Mr. Biden running around dancing. :eek:;):D Hahahahahaha

I kinda doubt Mr. Biden would feel "accepted" there. Last demo numbers I saw showed The Villages as about 75-80% Republican. Sarah Palin has made some appearances there, so, unless he has a Ronald Reagan-ish conversion, probably not his 'kind of town.'

But I will admit my opinion of him went up considerably when I learned he is a car guy. Just more evidence there is room for everyone in this hobby....

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Anyone moved to a community that is giving you grief about "that old piece of junk" in the garage?

I can't remember exactly where it is, but prior to Janet Ricketts getting ill, I believe that she and her husband John had found a place like you're talking about up in North Carolina (she's from Florida). I can't remember where the place is, and with Janet being ill, I don't want to ask. There may be someone from that area that may be able to answer your question. If my memory serves me correctly, they were trying to sell their house in Tarpon Springs, but due to the crash of the real estate market in Florida, they couldn't sell the house that they're in now.

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Pat, look at post #3. I think that is the place. I know it was discussed here before, but I don't know anything about it personally.

Of course, right here in Wilmington NC is not too bad a place either. It seems like about 1/2 of the residents of NY and NJ have retired here in the past 10 years or so. :D

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Don't know about retirement villages, but when I was buying my place, I refused to look at anyplace where my car ('79 Mark V) would not fit in the garage. I found that it would usually fit in the garage if the place was built between 1960 and 1980. It would not if it was built in the 80's or '90's. Possibly post 2000 they might have increased garage space for big SUV's. But I found it was best just to immediately rule out anything built in the 1980's or 1990's.

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Additionally something to consider is whether you might ever have to take in a child that is younger than an age restriction allows. Most places will allow them to visit only. Seniors that never dreamed they would have to take a child in were forced to sell in down markets rather than have the child go into foster care or be adopted.

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Of course, right here in Wilmington NC is not too bad a place either. It seems like about 1/2 of the residents of NY and NJ have retired here in the past 10 years or so. :D

First they retired to Florida then moved halfway back to NC. They are called halfbacks..........:D

I'd guess you'd call me a fullback..............I came all the way back

Edited by Skyking (see edit history)
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OK, maybe it is the daily grind getting to me, but I am starting to think about where I want to retire in 3-6 years.

I've looked at the Web site for The Villages in Florida; beautiful area and some reasonably priced homes. However, like many newer homes, the garages and lots seem small. So, it doesn't look conducive to building an extra building for a shop and storage barn.

Just wondering if any of the forum members have moved to an age-restricted community that is friendly to our old car hobby?

Anyone moved to a community that is giving you grief about "that old piece of junk" in the garage?

Anyone moved to a community that seems to go out of their way to be friendly to our hobby?

Experiences and lessons learned would be appreciated.

Joe

You may have to do what we did on retirement and that is just find a nice rural area unlikely to be annexed by any incorporated area. Seems like every planned community and every incorporated municipality these days is dead set on no one enjoying the ownership of boats, travel trailers, motor homes, for sure vintage cars, and a parts cars even behind a fence are out in a lot of places.

We found a really nice area not quite equidistant between San Antonio and Houston and have been very happy being 9 miles from the nearest towns. Lots of fellow vintage car enthusiasts in the area and though in the boonies so to speak we have a number of very good restaurants and three outstanding medical facilities within 15 minutes of pulling out of the drive. We're also less than 85 miles from Houston, 75 miles from Austin, and a bit over 100 miles from San Antonio. A few acres of car enthusiast bliss where I can have a parts car or two without anyone making a fuss about them.

If you want to do a bit of online rural and small town property looking in Texas go to Texas Real Estate Listing Service – Search for Texas Realtors and Real Estate Listings beyond major Texas MLS services where we found our present home.

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You may have to do what we did on retirement and that is just find a nice rural area unlikely to be annexed by any incorporated area. Seems like every planned community and every incorporated municipality these days is dead set on no one enjoying the ownership of boats, travel trailers, motor homes, for sure vintage cars, and a parts cars even behind a fence are out in a lot of places.

I agree 100% Jim. I have never understood the reason for moving into retirement villages if you have plenty of hobbies and outside interests to keep you busy. We built what I considered our retirement place about 30 years ago on 8 acres. I could do with a bit less land but would feel cramped without an acre or so. Since we were only 32 when we built the retirement place, now that we are really retired we may decide to eventually find a different place, but it will not have lots of rules and no space.

If I was looking for a new location, I think after deciding on a general part of the country, I would start investigating regional club activities for the different clubs I belong to. Then look for an area that has easy access without getting onto 4 lane roads.

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I agree 100% Jim. I have never understood the reason for moving into retirement villages if you have plenty of hobbies and outside interests to keep you busy. We built what I considered our retirement place about 30 years ago on 8 acres. I could do with a bit less land but would feel cramped without an acre or so. Since we were only 32 when we built the retirement place, now that we are really retired we may decide to eventually find a different place, but it will not have lots of rules and no space.

If I was looking for a new location, I think after deciding on a general part of the country, I would start investigating regional club activities for the different clubs I belong to. Then look for an area that has easy access without getting onto 4 lane roads.

Our thinking on retirement is obviously very similar. Frankly I've never understood why anyone would want to live in a retirement community with a bunch of old farts apparently just waiting for the grim reaper. I don't need to know about their last operation, nor do I give a damn about looking at pictures of their grand kids either. I sure don't need a bunch of silly organized activities damn near on a kindergarten level. Depressing thought to me that life could reach that low of an ebb. I'm still enough of a kid, though 68 years old, I'd rather be socializing with people still having meaningful goals for the future, I do.

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Jim, One of my retirement activity is a morning 3.5 mile walk with two other retired guys that live on the road. I was telling one of them about this thread this morning. I told him if he put in a shuffle board court I wouldn't play and might have to move because he was trying to turn the road into a retirement village. :cool:

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I think there are different needs and wants for different people.

The Villages seems to have some appeal because when you look at their online community newspaper, they have 52 (yes, 52!) pages of activities. I don't know if I want to learn French, how to raise a Bonsai tree, or take up tennis or golf, or many, many other activities, but I might want to experiment with them a few times, and I'm getting tired of being out in a semi-rural area. I own 2 acres now, and I am at least 25-30 minutes from anything going on in town. When it is raining here, I can spend a lot of time mowing, trimming trees and other routine maintenance.

The drawbacks of living out of the city may be attractions to others. Yes, there are no limits on what you do with your property, but that can mean that some guy who never throws anything away and leaves everything sitting around on his property, and another guy never throws out a broken boat, trailer, lawn tractor, table, chairs, swing set, or some half-completed project. It seems as if you pay less than $500,000 for your house around here, you can and do see anything sitting on someone's property.

I've been in a restricted community that went too far (your trash cans were limited in inches as to how far they could sit from your carport) but a limited, reasonable amount of restrictions means others have to keep their area clean and in good order.

So, I guess I want to live around people my age who also take care of their property, in a reasonably priced area with moderate weather and plenty to choose from in terms of activities and hobbies.

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Interesting thread that caught my eye. Years ago a guy who was a member of our local Olds Club Chapter wrote an article for our newsletter... it was fiction, and was presented as a dream he had that Don Garlits established a retirement community in Fla that was strictly for car hobbyists... all the houses had big garages with lifts or grease pits, there was a big community shop, may have been some sort of "test track" or something... all the amenities... seemed like a great idea to me!

I'll try to dig out some old newsletters and find it... it was enough to make you cry!

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I think there are different needs and wants for different people.

The Villages seems to have some appeal because when you look at their online community newspaper, they have 52 (yes, 52!) pages of activities. I don't know if I want to learn French, how to raise a Bonsai tree, or take up tennis or golf, or many, many other activities, but I might want to experiment with them a few times, and I'm getting tired of being out in a semi-rural area. I own 2 acres now, and I am at least 25-30 minutes from anything going on in town. When it is raining here, I can spend a lot of time mowing, trimming trees and other routine maintenance.

The drawbacks of living out of the city may be attractions to others. Yes, there are no limits on what you do with your property, but that can mean that some guy who never throws anything away and leaves everything sitting around on his property, and another guy never throws out a broken boat, trailer, lawn tractor, table, chairs, swing set, or some half-completed project. It seems as if you pay less than $500,000 for your house around here, you can and do see anything sitting on someone's property.

I've been in a restricted community that went too far (your trash cans were limited in inches as to how far they could sit from your carport) but a limited, reasonable amount of restrictions means others have to keep their area clean and in good order.

So, I guess I want to live around people my age who also take care of their property, in a reasonably priced area with moderate weather and plenty to choose from in terms of activities and hobbies.

After combining the original post and the above it seems to me you are not really viewing what you want to do in the future as much as you are lamenting what you have done. You have apparently put yourself in a stressful situation in having more property to take care of than your current time allows and are not really enjoying a daily commute to work. There isn't a rural area anywhere near a large city that doesn't have a constant flow of people coming and going for the exact same reasons you express.

Many people want to escape the city and all of its restrictions on just about everything, and possibly crime. They often make bad choices, and there are plenty of those everywhere. Having spent several years operating a rather large real estate business as a sideline, I can say without equivocation the worst mistake anyone can make is buying into some rural small acreage development that was likely done by someone hoping to make a chunk of money from subdividing a farm or small ranch. Those things never turn out as buyers hope they will and rarely as the seller thinks they will. There are not less than four or five of those disasters within ten miles of where I'm setting and they are scattered all over the country including our great State of Texas. The first problem is they are not really a development, just a pasture or woods with typically substandard roads/streets maybe barely meeting minimal requirements for future acceptance into county maintenance. Second problem is they probably have more land to sell than there is market for in the first place. Third problem is unless they sell enough of the property adhering to the initial restrictions, if any, they can change the restrictions on the remainder to attract a broader range of buyers because they are in financial straights. That means one could easily find their newly constructed $250,000 retirement home on two or three acres sitting in the middle of a bunch of manufactured homes and the typical undesirable things that come with them. As the saying goes "buyer beware." There is a lot to learn anytime when entertaining a move to a more rural setting. A good piece of advice is to never ever buy rural property where the access to the property is not at the outset via a hard surfaced road/street and maintained by either the county or the state.

Finally, if you look down the road so to speak to the time when you will be actually retired, your opinion of what you now have may change greatly, just as what you now view as being the perfect retirement situation may change as well.

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The rural setting is the answer. We bought 3 acres a little further out in the county and I have a 2900 sq ft home where I installed a 4 car garage(was not big enough) and 2 massive out buildings. I have parts cars galore in back of the 4 car garage as well as my motorhome, car trailer, hallmark hauler and a tow dolly and no one bothers me. I am waaaayyyy back from the road but can still see it. It will take 30 years or more for creeping goverment and development to get out to me, by then I won't care, my grand daughter can handle it.

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Rural life is not for everyone. It requires that one be rather self reliant. Rural life is NOT for those that tend live life out of a brown paper bag or have a habit of buying a lot of plastic junk at WalMart so they can thorw it out the window before they get home with it.

Yes, there are the rednecks of rural life. But then again what kind of factions leads one to leave the city in the first place???? THink about that one.

Yes, there are those of us that junk up the yard with old car hulls, laundry appliances and other so called eye sores. There are reasons for it that i will not try to explain to the People Magazine and subprimate loan note carrying crowds.

For a good retirement home in rural areas try to pick a house that suits your needs and at least 10 acres of land. The land does not have to be all usable. In fact the more cragie the better. The idea here is that ruff land discourages anyone else from trying to move in on u. It also tends to discourage large developements around the area. So taxes and other civic expenses tend to stay low.

Best to find such a place about 3 to 5 miles outside of a small town of say 3k to 5k people where there is some some local shopping for daily needs. Maybe 10-15 miles from a larger town with greater shopping variety. 30 miles from a large city.

If u have at least 10 acres then u don't have to worry about neighbors.

Again, rural life is for self reliant and introspective people. NOT for the People Magazine crowd. Not for people that must always 'seek the services of a professional' every time they need to wipe their butt. THose kind of people need to stay in their condo. WE don't want them out here at all.

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Someone had mentioned lawn care as a problem with large country estates. Forget the small riding mowers. They will wear u and your wallet out. Get a small gas powered tractor like and 8n or 9n Ford or To20 ferguson used for about $4k in GOOD condition and a 5 foot grooming mower for about $1500. Problem solved. I can mow 3 acres in just under 1 hour with mine.

But then again, rural life tends to dictate keeping a lawn that is just reasonably acceptable. If u must have a lawn that looks like a golf green then u need to stay in your condo and caress your little postage stamp sized patch of grass.

Ther are many adjustments to be made going from suburban life to rural. They weren't ez for me over 25 years ago. I WON"T go back to city/suburban life. I e don't want any organized community living either.

Edited by RenegadeV8 (see edit history)
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  • 10 years later...
On 2/10/2010 at 2:48 PM, Reatta Man said:

OK, maybe it is the daily grind getting to me, but I am starting to think about where I want to retire in 3-6 years.

I've looked at the Web site for The Villages in Florida; beautiful area and some reasonably priced homes. However, like many newer homes, the garages and lots seem small. So, it doesn't look conducive to building an extra building for a shop and storage barn.

Just wondering if any of the forum members have moved to an age-restricted community that is friendly to our old car hobby?

Anyone moved to a community that is giving you grief about "that old piece of junk" in the garage?

Anyone moved to a community that seems to go out of their way to be friendly to our hobby?

Experiences and lessons learned would be appreciated.

Joe

    A little late but the community in NC is Lenoir NC.   Basically a             neighborhood with a community building with a shop and lift.

Edited by Paul Dobbin
Spill Check (see edit history)
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On 2/12/2010 at 12:07 PM, Jim_Edwards said:

Our thinking on retirement is obviously very similar. Frankly I've never understood why anyone would want to live in a retirement community with a bunch of old farts apparently just waiting for the grim reaper. I don't need to know about their last operation, nor do I give a damn about looking at pictures of their grand kids either. I sure don't need a bunch of silly organized activities damn near on a kindergarten level. Depressing thought to me that life could reach that low of an ebb. I'm still enough of a kid, though 68 years old, I'd rather be socializing with people still having meaningful goals for the future, I do.

Of all the songs I ever heard on the radio, The Who spoke for My Generation in 1965 with the line, 

 

I HOPE I DIE BEFORE I GET OLD!

 

To me, that means when I'm over 100 before I have my first operation, and have to depend on others to look after me with those silly kindergarten level activities.

 

Craig

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9 hours ago, nick8086 said:

I was looking for a great place..- I found this for sale 7 years ago..  Need a place to retire.. Hemming from time to time list properties with garages..

garg.jpg

I don't understand why they didn't make the overhead door higher in the corner stall with the raised roof. A tall garage was my priority.

 

Craig

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5 minutes ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

Notice, friends, that this topic is 11 years old.

Do we think the original poster still needs

our help looking for a place to move?

I guess we'll soon find out!

 

And if he was successful, maybe some here are now ready to join his community after 11 years?

 

Craig

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On 2/15/2010 at 11:08 AM, PackardV8 said:

Rural life is not for everyone. It requires that one be rather self reliant. Rural life is NOT for those that tend live life out of a brown paper bag or have a habit of buying a lot of plastic junk at WalMart so they can thorw it out the window before they get home with it.

Yes, there are the rednecks of rural life. But then again what kind of factions leads one to leave the city in the first place???? THink about that one.

Yes, there are those of us that junk up the yard with old car hulls, laundry appliances and other so called eye sores. There are reasons for it that i will not try to explain to the People Magazine and subprimate loan note carrying crowds.

For a good retirement home in rural areas try to pick a house that suits your needs and at least 10 acres of land. The land does not have to be all usable. In fact the more cragie the better. The idea here is that ruff land discourages anyone else from trying to move in on u. It also tends to discourage large developements around the area. So taxes and other civic expenses tend to stay low.

Best to find such a place about 3 to 5 miles outside of a small town of say 3k to 5k people where there is some some local shopping for daily needs. Maybe 10-15 miles from a larger town with greater shopping variety. 30 miles from a large city.

If u have at least 10 acres then u don't have to worry about neighbors.

Again, rural life is for self reliant and introspective people. NOT for the People Magazine crowd. Not for people that must always 'seek the services of a professional' every time they need to wipe their butt. THose kind of people need to stay in their condo. WE don't want them out here at all.

I totally agree with the rural life. 30 years ago,  I moved on 8 acres, 15 minutes out of town, dirt road, now paved. Definitely not for everyone.  Well water, septic field, gotta get 8N tractor, chainsaws, learn fence work.  But on the plus side, every tree is an urinal and able to build my dream garage and fill it with "stuff".

On the other hand, live in a tent and get the ultimate garage...M1 Concourse.

IMG_0001 (2).JPG

shop full.JPG

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4 hours ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

Notice, friends, that this topic is 11 years old.

Do we think the original poster still needs

our help looking for a place to move?


Perhaps, having turned 65 last month, he is very busy moving as we speak ! He hasn’t checked in here since October of last year. I hope he lets us know when he has time !    -    Carl 

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The topic asks for opinions. 11 years later I would expect most to have more opinions that would be more deeply ingrained. All babies look and act alike. All old men look and act alike.

 

It's the Eisenhower Syndrome.

Image result for baby looks like eisenhower

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4 hours ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

Notice, friends, that this topic is 11 years old.

Do we think the original poster still needs

our help looking for a place to move?

I was going respond last night about this but John did it for me.  would love it if the OP would come back and fill us in on what happened.  Did he retire?  Did he give up on the idea?  Did he find the ideal place, or buy an island somewhere?   I see he last visited the forum in Oct 2020. 

Terry

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As much as I may enjoy that M1 Concourse I doubt it is what the OP had in mind.

Doesn't look old car friendly at all.

 

On 2/10/2010 at 9:57 PM, MCHinson said:

Pat, look at post #3. I think that is the place.

 

This place must not have panned out either.

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42 minutes ago, JACK M said:

As much as I may enjoy that M1 Concourse I doubt it is what the OP had in mind.

Doesn't look old car friendly at all.

 

 

This place must not have panned out either.

Actually I think they just changed the website sometime in the last 11 years since I posted that link: https://hawkshillcc.com/

 

 

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1 minute ago, MCHinson said:

Actually I think they just changed the website sometime in the last 11 years since I posted that link: https://hawkshillcc.com/

 

 

Thank You,

That does look like it would work.

A couple of places with the same concept around here but for horses.

I accidently drove thru one of them last summer in a loud hot rod and wasn't sure if I would be able to make the loop without being shot at.

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Looking back through I get a kick out of the comments on garage size. I have seen a lot of homes built in the 50's and early 60's with a garage that a Toyota will barely fit in, let alone an Imperial or Sedan de Ville.

 

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