Joyce and Bert Morgan hit a bump in their journey to finding their forever home. The retired couple thought they would age in place in a condo they had moved into after selling their Orangeville, Ontario home. They customized their new space and thought it was gorgeous. But condo life just wasn’t what they thought it would be.
“We felt trapped,” Joyce says.
Even though a lot of other retired couples lived in their building, Joyce says most people kept to themselves. “We didn’t make any hard and fast friends; you know, the kind where you could knock on their door and ask them to have a coffee with you.”
While the couple felt lonely, their dog, Maggie, was feeling confined. She’s an active Maltese Shih Tzu cross that loves the outdoors and basking in sunbeams. But with only a small balcony and little sun exposure, their beloved pet didn’t have access to grass or sunshine.
They knew they had to make a change. Joyce started looking at real estate listings and found a house for sale in the Parkbridge community of Wasaga Meadows.
“It’s funny because Bert told me he never wanted to live in Wasaga Beach!”, says Joyce. “He thought it would be way too busy, like living in downtown Toronto.”
Bert says he spent a lot of time on Wasaga Beach when he was young and always associated it with a noisy party town.
“I partied in Wasaga back in the 60s and 70s, when you could sleep on the beach and get away with it,” Bert jokes.
Joyce managed to convince him to take a look at the Wasaga Meadows home when she showed him the photos and listing price. Bert really loved the idea of being able to access a yard directly from his home without having to walk down a long hall and use an elevator.
When the couple arrived in Wasaga Meadows with their realtor, something other than the house really amazed them.
“A few neighbours stopped to say hello and chat with us”, says Bert. “That is something that never happened at the condo.”
Bert says he changed his mind about moving to Wasaga Beach right away. He and Joyce say they fell in love with the house and the friendliness of the community.
The couple was also pleased that their new forever home was located in a land lease community. “I felt great knowing that because it’s land lease, we’re not responsible for looking after grass and snow, which is way more important to me instead of owning the land,” says Joyce. “Our condo fees were about the same, but we just get so much more here.”
When they moved, the community welcomed the couple with open arms. Their neighbour Mary brought over some home-made banana bread and their other neighbour, Monique, introduced herself and told the couple to call on her for help or a chat at any time.
Though the COVID-19 pandemic has limited close social interactions since the Morgan’s moved in on June 30th, they still manage to connect with neighbours while on walks or outside. And when it’s safe to do so, Joyce says the community plans to resume a Friday night tradition of meeting up for a glass of wine or coffee in the mini park located across from her home.
The Morgan’s dog is also loving her new yard and gets treated like a local celebrity. Bert says neighbours carry treats in their pocket in case they run into Maggie on a walk.
Joyce is happy to say she has found ‘hard and fast’ friends she can rely on in Wasaga Meadows. When she’s asked what she would say to other retirees thinking of moving to a Parkbridge community, she simply says “Do it, do it now!”
Bert seconds her enthusiasm. He says living in Wasaga Meadows has made him feel younger and healthier. “I get a lot of sun here and can walk around barefoot on my grass and feel wonderful. I have way more better days than bad days.”
The couple didn’t consider themselves big adventurers before but now feel revived and ready to take on anything in their new forever home.
As Bert happily declares, “Our adventure is just beginning here.”
For more information on the community of Wasaga Meadows, please visit www.parkbridge.com/en-ca/retirement-communities/wasaga-meadows