The trend toward the "village" approach to aging in place is growing, says Nancy Thompson, senior media relations manager for AARP. She defines it as "co-housing" with a self-selected group of people who build a community together. It allows people to stay in their homes by providing easy access to services, especially transportation. Villages like this "are springing up all over the country," she said.
Other co-housing units --also known as affinity communities -- exist based on other shared commonalities. In Burbank, CA., the Burbank Senior Arts Colony is home to retired artists, musicians, actors and writers. The high-end Rainbow Vision in Santa Fe, N.M., is home to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender residents. In addition to its assisted living, it has a cabaret, an award-winning restaurant and a spa, reports AARP.