Why Seniors (aka Boomers) Relocate - Top Towns and Cities
I live in Asheville, NC, one of those places people like to live (or relocate here). At least that's what the "Top Places" guide books like to say.
You might wonder why I and my husband would move from Marin County, CA (that's the place north of SF (Sausalito, etc.) where Otis Redding wrote "Sitting on the dock of the Bay", foodie central, and close enough to the Sonoma/Napa Wine Country you can go for lunch and back in time for your hot tub, massage, and yoga class.
But I'm of that "new" old group - The ones who gotta keep on truckin', on the road searchin', movin' kinda folks.
My biggest reason was financial honestly. Knowing the real estate bubble probably would burst (no, really?!) we sold at the height (for once) and said "Where to now?" I researched, read, asked around websites and found for me ultimately, our search would be East. Southeast. I thought water, but my town, Asheville NC won me over -- and I got my husband to move here and buy a home without ever visiting! How's that for certainty!
Here's my reasons for moving to Asheville NC, but for the most part, the reasons are similar. Everyone wants a walking community, access to good healthcare, natural settings help, public transportation, colleges or university, good weather generally, and affordable.
My reasons for Asheville (when I lived in CA people said "Asheville? Where's that?") But guess what - My neighbor behind my home moved here 6 months after me - from Marin too!
Here's what others says, in this segment from CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=5020563n
So here's Asheville's Top Ten Reasons to Relocate Here:
1. BEAUTIFUL VISTAS, VIEWS, MOUNTAINS (I guess the Blue Ridge Parkway just about says it all). Here's more info from the National Parks Department: http://www.nps.gov/BLRI/index.htm
2. Friendly people and Great Food - Here's a longtime favorite place to eat near the Biltmore Estate http://www.rezaz.com/overview.html
3. "Gay Friendly" Read what The Advocate Newspaper had to say (btw, Iowa City was first - Sorry San Francisco! http://www.advocate.com/Print_Issue/Travel/Gayest_Cities_in_America/
4. "Green" is a growing - in building, support of public transit, slow food movement, etc. More and more urban gardens also. Visit my friend Bob White's efforts helping minorities eat fresh food ath this public housing Urban Garden: http://acga.localharvest.org/garden/M18175.
5. We have the University of North Carolina at Asheville's Center for Creative Retirement - one of the first programs dedicated to the needs and interests of Seniors - many of whom teach classes in their beautiful center. They offer a yearly program for everyone wanting to know how to best transition into Retirement with their yearly weekend event coming in May "Explorations In Retirement" Here's more info: http://www.unca.edu/ncccr/programs/crew/index.html
6. Asheville has an exciting and thriving Arts community for a town of abt. 75,000 - A symphony, performing arts theater and a growing Arts District in what was once a rundown river area.Here's a peek at the Asheville Symphony http://www.ashevillesymphony.org/ and the River District Artists:http://www.riverdistrictartists.com/
7. Wonderful places to hike and enjoy nature - skiing too, and river kayaking. The Carolina Mountain Club is the oldest hiking organization in the area http://www.carolinamtnclub.com/
8. Asheville Real Estate is relatively affordable (subjective I know) - especially if a Boomer is coming from places in the Northeast, West and Florida - all big magnets for relocation to Asheville. Here's data from the Chamber of Commerce: http://www.ashevillechamber.org/economicdevelopment/PDFs/costofliving.pdf
9. We have an excellent hospital and doctors nearby and if necessary, Duke Medical Center is not that far either.
10. The FUNK! - Gotta love the funk of young and old. This is my own personal opinion, but with a little local color from Tatooed Mamas, to Drum Beat Circles, to great Brew Pubs and Music Venues, it's like a mini SF! Here's one great place for music (folks relocated from New Orleans by the way) The Orange Peel http://www.theorangepeel.net/ I could go on, but come and visit - and see/feel for yourselves. As they say Asheville is Any Way You Like It!
So that's a Taste of Asheville. But truly, there's lots of places people like similar to this. Davis, Ca., Pittsburgh PA is attracting folks who want to return to their college town, Oxford Mississippi, home of a great Jazz Festival and near Clarksdale, where I'm headed this summer.
Point is, this new generation of older adults have lived alot already -- but definitely see the cup as half full. There's a whole lotta livin to do, a big country to do it in, and lots of places to explore. Life's a Journey - All Aboard!!!