Small Town Livability

Livability is what makes small towns a good place to live and to retire to.

Small Town Sense of Community

Many features makes up what we call livability, but for me it is a sense of community. Big cities and urbanized suburbs have much to offer, but they can’t hold a candle to small towns in offering a sense of community on a personal level. I could give many examples as I have experienced this first hand after moving from a big city urbanized suburbs to a Del Webb Community in a small town two years ago.

I loved living in the suburbs while I was working, but now that I am retired, I like my new small town community and feel a sense of pride in it.

Small Town Amenities

The amenities in small towns have improved and may even offer more accessibility to amenities than you were used to.  We have 5 theaters around our area, a regional mall within 15 minutes, Universities nearby, museums and some very nice gourmet restaurants.  Just about any service you want is available.  Amazon Prime delivers to my doorstep!

Small Town Demographics

Most people, I have found, are open and friendly. They are well spoken, interesting and at least as intelligent as the public can be. They can not be type cast.  The teenagers show a respect to us adults and don’t just look through you as though you do not exist,  like they did in the suburbs.

Small Town Education

I have been impressed with the colleges, universities and technical schools in the area.  We went to a show put on by the Gainesville Theater Alliance put on by the Drama Department of two area colleges and it was excellent!  I reviewed recently the IT computer department of the local university and was impressed with the staff and the programs offered.  There is a program for senior adults that offers a range of interesting courses for us.

Small Town Economy

The economy in my area is dong great.  The paper lists the new commercial projects and rezoning requests. Four or five new restaurants just opened last year in the immediate area and several more in the general area and they are doing a good business.

Small Town Health Care

I have never had this good of access to health care.  We have a hospital right next door to Village at Deaton Creek off Friendship Rd and that has caused multiple medical buildings to sprout up in the area.  Most of my doctor appointments are now only 5 minutes away! This has been the best and biggest surprise since moving to my area. They can handle anything right here from heart stents and by pass surgery, removing prostate cancer, cataract surgery to my annual physicals.

Small Town Housing

Small towns offer a variety of homes from 55+ communities to farms to rural homes with big lot or acreage. The prices may be a little lower than in the city but not as much as you may think.  Retirement areas seems to bring more services catered to us retirees and they is a good thing.  Buying in an 55+ Retirement Community like we did, gives you certain housing standards as do other communities.  The new Del Webb at Chateau Elan is opening in March.

Small Town Governments and Civics

We have been pleased to be part of Hall County.  They have a nice mid rise government building with tag and tax and other services that is very efficient. You are in and out.

Hall County Georgia also has a senior school tax exemption that we are getting and helps a lot.

Our voting precinct is 5 minutes away. I am going for jury duty Monday morning. There is an Arts Council with Summer and Winter programs. There are programs to promote downtown Gainesville and other towns with events each week.

Small Town Transportation and Infrastructure

Our parkway at the entrance is two years new and goes 9 miles all the way to Lake Lanier. It has a Life Pathway walk way all along the route where you can walk, run, bike and even use your golf cart.  The intersecting busy Spout Springs road will be widen as is I-85 up past our exit.  The road are good but we do have some two lane rural roads too and while scenic must be the reason our drivers insurance is a little higher. But it is worth it for the atmosphere of seeing pasture, barns and llamas.

Life After The Suburbs

After  having retired to a small town over two years ago,  I am pleased with the livability.  I see nothing that I am lacking and have gain more than I expected. Could not ask for anything more.

Robert Fowler
Also see my blog about living in a Del Webb community.

 

 

 

 

Two Interesting Small Towns with Retirement Communities in Georgia

Interesting Georgia Small Towns with Retirement Communities

Retirement communities and small towns go together anywhere and Georgia is no exception.

Maybe it is the idea that folks want to slow down and get out of the rat race. Maybe some folks remember growing up in a small town and would like to return to the days not so complicated by traffic and businesses everywhere.  Some want the natural scenery and being close to many outdoors attractions. Some say the land is cheaper for the big track of land to be developed into a large retirement community.

What ever the reasons, many of the retirement communities in Georgia are located in small towns, albeit many are in close proximity to the large Atlanta metro area.

So what are some of the small towns with retirement communities in Georgia?

Fall Festival in Hoschton GA
Fall Festival in Hoschton GA

1.  Hoschton, GA – Is home to Village at Deaton Creek, a Del Webb community of over 1,000 homes. By the way a new hospital with 100 beds is under contruction adjacent to this community.  The City of Hoschton is a small community located just off Interstate  I-85 in Jackson Country in North Georgia.  This area where Deaton Creek is located is the convergence of three or four counties and most of the homes are actually located in Hall County but have a Hoschton mailing address.  This area is a small community but close enough to be at Mall of Georgia in about 20 minutes.  This mixes the advantage of small town living and the convenience of being less that 45 minutes from cities like Athens, Gainesville and Atlanta metro.

Lake Lanier GA
Lake Lanier GA

2.  Gainesville, GA – ia home to  Cresswind at Lake Lanier, a wonderful retirement community on Lake Lanier while still in the city of Gainesville, which is the country seat of Hall County. Downtown Gainesville has a mixture of shops and first class restaurants. Also there are like 4 or 5 theaters and playhouses in Gainesville. At the foothills of the North Georgia mountains and easy access to Metro Atlanta from both I-985 and GA 400, Gainesville is a highly rated town for retirement with excellent hospital, shopping, Lake Lanier and more.

Other Georgia towns with nice retirement communities are Griffin, Canton and Greensboro.

Gainesville GA – 55+ Home Deals

Lake Lanier Gainesville retirement community

I have been surprised that the prices on many new homes in active adult communities have not dropped that much. Same for resales.  But there may be a opportunity for a deal on homes being finished at Seaons on Lake Lanier in Gainesville Georgia north of Atlanta.

Seasons on Lake Lanier in on beautiful lake lanier in North Georgia was started by Levitt & Sons as developer.  My wife and I went up and previewed this community on July 6, 2007. See our blog post.  Then Levitt & Sons the developer went bankrupt.

That was then this is now.  We spoke with a on site person who says 30 homes that were presales are being finished.  I saw that  John Wieland doing so of the building. The homes are being finished as ordered originally and will contain the extras like hardwood floors, paint colors, etc as ordered.  However these homes are offered at true saving of $30 to $60 thousand off the original Levitt & Sons price.  So if you find a home that has what you want or can live with, then you may get a very good price.

The plan is at the first of the year to select a developer to pick up Seasons at Lake Lake and continue the built off of 700 plus homes and the amenities.  At that time prices could go up.  This may be worth checking out if you are currently in the market for a home in an active adult community.  Their web site is seasonsonlakelanier.com.