By Alexander Germanis
Homeowners on the fence about selling their houses have witnessed a tremendous boom in the real estate market in the last year or so. Home values are higher than they’ve been in many years. Of course the flip side of that coin is that finding and buying a new home has become increasingly difficult and expensive. But for retirees looking for a path toward a simpler, carefree retirement — one free of the burden of home ownership — the time has never been better to move.
Making that move to Liberty Village in Peoria means not only divesting oneself of the responsibility of home maintenance, but it also means having a much bigger nest egg from which to better enjoy one’s retirement.
Better still, it’s a fantastic way to connect with other retirees in a community of those looking to finally live the lives they always deserved.
Estate Living on a Personal Level
Situated to the west of the Greater Peoria area, is Liberty Village of Peoria. Only minutes away from shopping, movies, restaurants, and every other benefit the city has to offer, Liberty Village is a home to every level of care for senior living: the Villas, Hawthorne Inn, Garden Court, Manor Court, and, of course, Liberty Estates.
“Liberty Estates is freedom at its finest!” proudly declares Liberty Village Estates Manager Kim Farmer. “The Estates offers comfortable independent living at an affordable, all-inclusive, month-to-month rent. We also offer respite stays — a short term stay for seniors that may not want to be cooped up alone during the winter months; or maybe they just want to come stay for a few months to see what we are all about. Either way, you can always find a friend to have a cup of coffee with.”
At the Estates, seniors may choose from studio, one-bedroom, or a two-bedroom apartments. Two buffet meals per day — lunch and dinner — are provided, as is housekeeping and routine maintenance. Plus, each apartment comes equipped with a complete kitchen. “Our tenants say it has all the frills without the fuss,” Kim shares. “And our staff is friendly and accommodating.”
Of course, for seniors who require something a little different in independent living, there are the single family homes or duplexes of the Villas. The Villas allow seniors to experience the freedoms and pleasure of home ownership but without the hassle of constant maintenance.
With an ever increasing physically disconnected society, it has become all the more important to stress the importance of connecting with one another in a physical setting. Isolation impacts quality of life — physically, emotionally, and mentally. Perhaps the best aspect of choosing Liberty Estates then is for the level of interconnectivity available to the tenants.
“Many of our tenants have similar hobbies and interests, so they enjoy them together,” Kim says. “There is a needlework group, book club, card making classes, crafts, painting, and more.”
On top of staying connected, staying active both physically and mentally is crucial to better overall health, which is why Liberty Estates offers activities that challenge both the mind and the body. Of course Villas tenants can be a part of the fun as well. “Whether it be a morning stretch, a workout at AJ’s fitness, walking around our beautiful community on a nice day, beautifying our courtyard, testing your trivia knowledge, or participating in our senior spelling bee, we highly encourage an active lifestyle,” Kim confirms.. “Our seniors are always on the go! We even have seniors that still work and volunteer in the community!”
Do such levels of activity mean it is to be expected of every resident who lives at the Estates? Not at all. “At our Estates, one can be as social or as private as they wish,” says Kim. “We offer an array of activities to fit into everyone’s lifestyle.” Regardless of the level of interconnectivity one chooses, one’s choices are never far away.
Outings and ‘In-ings’
“We are always adding new activities for our tenants,” Kim states. “You need to be able to reach all of your population to get everyone involved.”
Whether that means taking a lunch break out to a restaurant, doing a bit of shopping at Wal-Mart, or taking a trip to Tanners Orchard — as the tenants did in the fall — the list of off-campus outings is endless. Every resident who lives there continues to add their suggestions to that list and they simply tick them off as they experience each one. For instance, coming up is a trip to the Par-A-Dice Hotel Casino for some lunch (and maybe a little gambling).
The activities never cease at the Estates, however; and the tenants are as free to suggest new pastimes. With a Valentine’s Day party and celebration right around the corner, the Estates also plan on playing the “Not So Newlywed Game,” starring the married tenants, although it is open for all the tenants’ entertainment.
It doesn’t end there, Kim assures. “We had a wonderful Christmas party, New Year’s Eve party, and also hosted our first ever Senior Spelling Bee! We always have card games, morning stretch, bingo, crafts, movie nights, church communion, and ‘Thirsty Thursdays.’ We will be enjoying live entertainment, presentations from our local community on services that will benefit our seniors, and lots of outings!”
Adapt and Live On
Liberty Village is one of the few senior living facilities that has not changed hands or ownership over the years and, as such, they consistently offer the finest in retirement living. This is as beneficial to the wonderful staff as it is to the tenants themselves. Amenities and services have been or are being remodeled and improved. All the while the safety of the tenants and the cleanliness of the campus are held at top priority.
Of course, part of surviving for so long in an ever-changing world does require further adaptation, both on the part of the community and the individual. “As our population changes, so do their needs, which means we need to change as well,” Kim admits. “More and more seniors are using smart TV’s, laptops, and tablets that require Wi-Fi, so we recently upgraded our Wi-Fi. This may seem like such a minuscule change, but it can make a big impact on day-to-day life.”
Unfortunately, part of adapting during retirement life might include recognizing the need for a little bit of extra help to get by. Therein lies the beauty of having the interconnected continuum of care at Liberty Village.
At Hawthorne Inn, the independent lifestyle is still experienced but with the added benefit of assistance when needed. Nursing services and CNA assistance is offered 24 hours a day and three meals are provided daily.
For seniors who require more care, Manor Court and Garden Court staff are specifically trained to aid with the daily living of those who suffer both physically and mentally. The memory care unit known as Garden Court is a secured unit for those diagnosed with dementia or Alzheimer’s. At Manor Court, seniors who need skilled nursing care can find a home. “Our professional nursing team will work together to meet the medical, social and emotional needs of your loved one,” assures Kim. “In our Bounce Back unit, our specialized therapy team works individually with each tenant on their rehabilitation journey.”
“Knowing that the next level of care available when it is needed is a comfort for many of our seniors,” says Kim. “In fact, this may be the reason they chose our campus. They are able to get to know the staff from across campus, so they already feel comfortable when it is time to make the move to the next level of care.”
As Good as its Residents
“I cannot stress enough that we have so many talented, interesting, caring, and compassionate individuals here in our community. I am amazed every single day by our seniors!” Kim pridefully exudes. “They check up on each other, give birthday cards, help each other out, and encourage one another. It seems like I learn something new about them all the time. Our tenants love to welcome new members to our community and they are proud to live here. We have so much fun!”
Any community, whether it’s a bustling metropolis or a small village, is only going to be as good as its people. At Liberty Village’s Liberty Estates the tenants have made their community into a wonderful place — one of connection, activity, friendship, and family.
Liberty Estates is part of Liberty Village of Peoria and is located at 6926 N. Stalworth Drive in Peoria, IL 61615. Call and schedule a tour today at (309) 693-1400, Option 3! Or visit us on the web at www.libertyvillageofpeoria.com to see what we have to offer.
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