Ohio - Retirees Find a Growing Number of Housing Options
With a large number of Ohio's 11,300,000 residents growing older each year, it is clear that the demand for retirement housing will become an ever-increasing force in the State's housing market, particularly as many of these baby boomers seek to downsize and opt for smaller homes and a more care-free lifestyle.
In fact, as their numbers continue to escalate, retirees desiring to remain in Ohio are already beginning to see the development of significant new facilities and retirement communities designed specifically to fit their needs. While community developers have not yet created a significant number of resort-style residential developments within the State for this emerging active adult market, there is an expanding number of highly desirable age-restricted communities with villa-style homes, townhomes and condos.
And it should be noted that operators of continuing care and assisted living facilities have aggressively gone about meeting the needs of older retirees by rapidly expanding the construction and operation of these types of centers, which can be found scattered across the State, primarily in or near the major metropolitan cities such as Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Dayton, as well as in several smaller towns.
Despite the general perception across the U.S. that the larger cities in Ohio are considered to be industrial centers and not necessarily conducive to the active, quality lifestyle desired by many younger retirees, the reality of the situation is that most Ohio cities are undergoing a transformation into dynamic centers of art and culture whose citizens can enjoy a varied menu of live dramatic and musical performances and also have access a wide-ranging selection of museums and galleries without ever leaving the State.
Cleveland, for example, has, in recent years, re-invented itself into a cosmopolitan, gleaming city with an impressive list of world-class museums, a revitalized waterfront, great restaurants and spectacular sports facilities. The result is a city that has been ranked by several sources as being among the best places to live in the country.
In the same vein, Columbus, in the center of the State and home to The Ohio State University, has become much more than just a university town, having been recently cited by Newsweek as one of the best cities in the U.S. in which to live and work. Here retirees have access to an array of big city amenities, including ballet, symphony and opera companies, yet still enjoy the character and ambience of a Midwestern small town.
For retirees seeking to retire in a small town, places like Oberlin and Wooster have much to offer. Home to one of the nation's most prestigious small liberal arts colleges, Oberlin provides a charming setting with an affordable cost of living, a low crime rate and quiet residential neighborhoods on tree-lined streets, just a short distance from the shores of Lake Erie and only a few miles from the big city excitement of Cleveland. Many experts consider it to be among the top retirement small towns in the U.S.
Wooster, a small community of about 23,000 people, is located in eastern Ohio in the heart of Amish farmland, and offers the opportunity for retirement living in a laid-back college setting that boasts one of the highest concentrations of PhD's per capita in the State.
Another aspect of retirement living in Ohio that should not be overlooked is its tremendous opportunity for outdoor recreation. With the State's varied and panoramic landscapes, its many magnificent lakes and rivers and endless miles of biking and hiking trails; nature enthusiasts should never be at a loss for something to do. And with more than 800 golf courses, any retired golfer living in Ohio is ensured of a great place to tee it up.
Obviously, the prospect of confronting Ohio's harsh Midwestern winters may dissuade some retirees from making this their retirement destination of choice, but, on the other hand, mild summers and beautiful spring and fall weather and the pleasure of a true four-season climate is enough, for man, to offset the inconvenience of some snow and ice for those few months.
For more information on finding your best places to retire, visit