If you are looking for a retirement home, forget moving across the country, check out your own backyard instead. St. Joseph, Mich. has once again been named one of the best places in the country to retire.
Construction on homes in the Harbor Shores development is showing no signs of slowing down. The development which spans parts of St. Joseph, Benton Harbor and Benton Charter Township has sold 32 of 96 home sites now open and has at least 7 are reserved for future buyers -- about half of those homes will be owned by retirees.
"This is what we set out to do. We knew that retirees being one of the demo we were targeting were looking for highly amenitized master plan communities," says Kerry Wright the Director of Sales and Marketing for Evergreen Development Company, LLC and spokes person for Harbor Shores.
People who live there won't have to take care of their lawn or remove snow. Not only that, they will have access to the beautiful beaches, a friendly downtown, and a beautiful golf course.
But Harbor Shores isn't alone in its lure for retirees. CNN Money named St. Joseph number 11 of their 25 best places to retire. The article calls St. Joseph a "vibrant, year-round community." It talks about the top-notch medical care and proximity to Chicago.
"Retirees are a good portion of my book of business and many of my realtor friends," says Re/Max Realtor Doreen Johan.
Johan says a lot of her clients are looking for a reasonably priced home near family. And once they get here, they love the area's walking paths, beach fronts, and year-round activities and festivals. Helen Lacelle is one of those clients -- moving here to be closer to family and looking forward to getting to know the area. Johan and Lacelle spent hours on Tuesday looking at homes in St. Joseph.
"I'd really like to find a home so I can get settled before the winter sets in," says Lacelle.
According to the Southwestern Michigan Realtor's Association, the average home price in St. Joseph is about $202,000 thousand dollars. On the market now: The least expensive home is about $47,000 and the most expensive is about $2.5 million.