This Trend Could Allow You To Grow Old in Your Own Home, Affordably

Photo (cc) by Tobyotter

It may not surprise you that many older Americans don’t have the money they need to retire. Nearly one-third of people 50 and older have neither savings nor a traditional pension. Even among those who do save, many cannot put aside as much as they’ll need.

The answer: Aging in place

The savings deficit makes moving to an assisted living facility out of the question for many — maybe most –seniors, as the midrange cost for assisted living is $3,600 a month, and prices are much higher in many cities.

Fortunately, a new movement called “neighborhood villages” is starting to fill the money gap, letting older people avoid assisted living by staying put in their homes for most or all of their lives. The fact is that most of us, with money or not, would rather grow old in our own homes, AARP pollsters find. “Aging in place,” is the term often used.

Pet walking to grocery runs

Village to Village Network, a nonprofit organization that encourages neighborhood villages and helps volunteers start them, describes the movement this way:

Villages are membership-driven, grass-roots organizations that, through both volunteers and paid staff, coordinate access to affordable services including transportation, health and wellness programs, home repairs, social and educational activities, and other day-to-day needs enabling individuals to remain connected to their community throughout the aging process.

3 main purposes

Villages vary in their particulars, but they provide three main components:

  • They consolidate local services and make them available through a one-call concierge phone line connecting members with the help they need to keep living in their homes. Villages may offer a list of prescreened tradespeople like handymen, electricians, carpenters and plumbers, and discounts on services that members need, such as at-home care, for example. Member volunteers may provide other things — pet walking, grocery delivery, check-in calls, home maintenance help, errands and transportation to doctor appointments, for instance.
  • Villages also support members’ physical health through exercises and activities.
  • They strengthen social and emotional health through clubs, activities, outings and social events that support crucial friendships, connections and community.

Costs vary, but membership fees appear to run as high as several hundred dollars per person per year.

Network of villages

So far 190 grass-roots, member-run villages are up and running across the country, the network says. Another 185 or so are in the works for a total of some 25,000 members in the United States. Villages also have popped up in Australia, The Netherlands and Canada.

This map and list let you find villages where you live. A few examples:

  • Beacon Hill Village in Boston was founded in 2001 and is the model for the fast-growing movement. Annual membership: $675 for an individual, $975 for households.
  • Capitol Hill Village is one of two dozen villages in Washington, D.C. Founded eight years ago, it is another pioneer village. About half of its 400 members volunteer within the village. Annual membership: $530 for an individual, $800 for households.
  • Monadnack at Home, in New Hampshire, has 90 member households and serves 10 rural communities. Annual membership: $450 for an individual, $600 for households.

Villages are supported by member fees, but some villages subsidize some of their memberships for those who have trouble paying.

Start a village where you live

What’s your plan for your later years? Can you afford to move to an assisted care facility? Share with us and discuss with others in our Forums, or post on our Facebook page.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
What Brand Makes the Best Rechargeable AA Batteries?
What Brand Makes the Best Rechargeable AA Batteries?

The best battery depends on what you need it for and how big your budget is. Here’s how to find the cheapest brand that will do the job you need.

7 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook
7 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook

Did you realize all these tax credits and deductions exist — or that they apply to retirees?

Want a Healthy Retirement? Turn This Device Off
Want a Healthy Retirement? Turn This Device Off

A common behavior becomes increasingly dangerous for those who are 50 or older.

17 Home Upgrades That Rarely Help Close a Sale
17 Home Upgrades That Rarely Help Close a Sale

Real estate agents give these renovations low marks when it comes to helping sell homes.

Can My Wife Use My Social Security Benefits While Letting Hers Grow?
Can My Wife Use My Social Security Benefits While Letting Hers Grow?

Your self-discipline in not uttering three little words helps determine whether you can use a key claiming strategy.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
10 Things Frugal People Never Buy
10 Things Frugal People Never Buy

If you’re a true tightwad, the mere thought of spending money on these items gives you the willies.

10 Useless Purchases You Need to Stop Making
10 Useless Purchases You Need to Stop Making

You might as well flush your money down the loo if you spend it on these things.

7 Social Security Rules Everyone Should Know by Now
7 Social Security Rules Everyone Should Know by Now

Confusion over Social Security is a shame, considering how many of us will need this money badly.

7 Social Security Benefits You May Be Overlooking
7 Social Security Benefits You May Be Overlooking

There’s more to Social Security than retirement benefits.

If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It
If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It

They don’t make coffee makers like this anymore.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

14 Things You Should Stop Buying in 2021
14 Things You Should Stop Buying in 2021

These convenient household products come with hidden costs that you might not have considered.

The 6 Best Investing Apps for Beginners
The 6 Best Investing Apps for Beginners

If you’re looking to ease into investing in the coronavirus economy with just a little money, check out these easy-to-use tools.

Is Writing a Check Still Safe?
Is Writing a Check Still Safe?

Every time you pay by check, you hand your bank account numbers to a stranger.

8 Things You Should Replace to Improve Your Life Today
8 Things You Should Replace to Improve Your Life Today

Being frugal isn’t smart if you put off replacing these items.

6 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Accounts From Hackers
6 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Accounts From Hackers

Imagine having $245,000 stolen from your retirement account — and not being reimbursed.

9 Mistakes People Make When Cleaning With Vinegar
9 Mistakes People Make When Cleaning With Vinegar

Cleaning with vinegar can save you a lot of money, but using it like this can cost you.

13 Amazon Purchases We Are Loving Right Now
13 Amazon Purchases We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

4 States Where Taxes on Social Security May Fall Soon
4 States Where Taxes on Social Security May Fall Soon

These states are considering reducing — or even eliminating — income taxes on Social Security benefits.

10 Things Successful Retirees Do Differently
10 Things Successful Retirees Do Differently

These habits and characteristics can help put you on the track to success.

7 Hidden Sections of Amazon Every Shopper Should Know
7 Hidden Sections of Amazon Every Shopper Should Know

These little-known departments of Amazon are gold mines for deal-seekers and impulse shoppers alike.

7 Costly Health Problems That Strike After Age 50
7 Costly Health Problems That Strike After Age 50

As we age, our bodies wear down. Here is how to cut costs associated with some common ailments.

29 Purchases That Can Save You Money Every Day
29 Purchases That Can Save You Money Every Day

Sometimes, you’ve got to spend to save.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.