Avril had been thinking for some time about downsizing from a large three-bedroom house to a smaller apartment that’s much easier to maintain, but didn’t think it was feasible for her until she saw an advertisement for Limelight in a local newspaper.
“I saw an advertisement in the Manchester Evening News, and Limelight seemed a likely possibility for me – the fact that it came under Trafford Housing Trust suggested to me that it wasn’t a commercial, profit-orientated organisation.”
“I came to have a look around the development and the apartments suited me 100%. A lot of retirement apartments are very small but I like open-plan and a sense of space, so Limelight offered exactly the sort of apartment I was looking for. And the price-point was more reasonable than some of the other developments I looked at, that gave me a lot less for a lot more”.
Initially, the 24/7 care that Limelight offers wasn’t an immediate priority for Avril – the main things that appealed to her about Limelight was being able to get rid of her cumbersome garden and stairs, and finding a cost-effective way of releasing equity from her home. However, she does recognise the convenience of having professionals on hand when she needs it.
“My health issues aren’t going to go away. I’m ageing, so it’s there for the future when I need it. At the moment, I’m okay and nobody does anything for me because I’m independent, but I know the time will come when I will need a bit more support for my long-term future.”
“I also wanted to make the move now whilst I was still fit enough to do it, rather than waiting until I didn’t have any energy left. I did speak to my renal consultant about it, and she said that she’s got a waiting room full of people who should make that decision whilst they can, but so many people leave it too late and they can’t manage it.
Although there are many people who rent their apartment at Limelight, Avril decided that it was best for her to buy her apartment using the Older Person’s Shared Ownership scheme. “I couldn’t have afforded to pay the rent out of my income, but by downsizing I released enough capital to purchase 75% of my apartment so I didn’t have any rent to pay. I could also bank the profit on selling my house which is there for my future in a way that was the most cost-effective for me.”
“I think Shared Ownership the way of the future for a lot of older people who will need support, who can be in a warmer, secure place with help on tap when they need it.”
Since moving to Limelight, in January 2018, Avril hasn’t looked back: “I’m very happy here – it seems to be a happy community. There’s a lot of life centred around the library; it’s just a warm and friendly environment. When I go out of my apartment to go out of the building, there’s always 2 or 3 members of staff around that speak to you, say hello, and that gives you a sense of being part of a community. I value my independence and privacy but I’ve been able to meet so many new people and got involved with new stuff, so that’s good”
“I would recommend Limelight to anyone because they’re nice apartments, they’re easy to live in, and you’ve got so much on your doorstep. I like that the library and the restaurant and all the other facilities like the doctors and the pharmacy are in the same building – what more could a lady want?”
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Watch Avril's video testimonial below: