Age Restricted Communities- Why Ages 55 and 62

55 and 62 Age Limits for Retirement Communities

As you might have noticed when looking for your retirement community, many communities geared toward retirees all talk about 55 and 62 age limits. It seems like the numbers are random sometimes but in actuality they're rooted in The Fair Housing Amendments Act of 1988 which modified the Civil Rights Act of 1968. This update added families and handicapped people to the list of those who couldn't be discriminated against.

However, there were two exceptions that were made in regards to housing communities for seniors. The law created the term “age restricted” which means a community completely made up of people who are 62 years and older OR a minimum of 80 percent of the housing units had at least one person who was 55 years or older.

Potential home buyers who are 55 years of age or older have three choices for the kind of community they may want to move to next. They can choose a community specifically restricted to those 55 and older, a community that is predominately in that age bracket, or a community with no specific age dominance. Inside the industry, communities restricted to those 55 and older are usually called age-qualified,due primarily to marketing concerns and presumed negative connotations associated with the word restricted. Such communities generally require householders to be 55 years of age or older, based on the Fair Housing Law governing age-qualified housing.

Senior Housing

Senior housing is usually age 62+ and may offer units for rent with other services included like meals, planned activities and transportation.

According to the American Housing Survey (AHS), conducted in odd numbered years by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Census Bureau, as of 2005, only 1.4% of the 69 million owner-occupied units were specifically labeled age-qualified senior housing communities. While this might seem like a small number, about 10% of housing units were described by their residences as being located in a mostly 55 years plus community where most residents were older or retirees.

This might seem small but these types of communities are one of the hottest trends in residential real estate. The reasons are obvious. The boomers are aging rapidly and have been accustomed to a life full of opportunity while living life on their own terms. According to predictions from the U.S. Census and the NAHB, the amount of people 55+ has gone from 52.2 million people (21% of the population) in 1990 to a predicted 76.6 million (24.5% of the population in 2010. This is increasing demand for 55+ retirement communities with organized activities as well as people to take care of the standard chores of living.

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13 Sep 2016


By By Robert Fowler
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