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After Touring Retirement Communities, They Changed Their Minds

Jim and Mary Birkhead called Overland Park home for 50 years. Expecting to stay in their house for the duration of their retirement, the Birkheads purchased a home with a master bedroom on the first floor, so, if needed, they could live on one level of their residence as they aged.

“We really thought we would stay there,” Jim said.

As time passed, however, the Birkhead were spending a lot of time maintaining their residence.

“We had a lawn service and a housekeeper, but it was still a big job,” Mary said.

When Mary started to experience some back pain, she no longer wanted to cook every night or clean up the kitchen. It was at this point that, despite their prior plan to remain in their home, Jim and Mary realized they hadn’t done enough research to rule out a move to a retirement community.

“We picked five retirement communities to visit, near our church and St. Luke’s South, where our doctors practiced,” Jim said.

As the couple visited communities, Jim started to put together a spreadsheet evaluating each option available, including staying put in their home in Overland Park.

“When all was said and done,” Jim said, “Lakeview Village was the best.”

The Birkheads liked Lakeview’s location on 100 acres in a residential neighborhood. As proud dog owners to their pooch, Corky, the couple was pleased with the green spaces for exploring. They appreciated the convenience of attached garage parking, and were comforted with the knowledge that future healthcare is available on-site, should they need it.

But at the end of the day, it was the people at Lakeview Village who sold Jim and Mary on their move.

“We were here, just walking around, and people would be out on their balconies reading a book and say hello like they’d known us forever,” Mary said.

Corky, the couple’s dog, made a smooth transition to their new apartment. Jim had been worried that she wouldn’t adjust, because she was used to a large, fenced-in backyard and a doggie door that allowed her access to the outdoors whenever she wanted. Happily, Corky is thriving in her new home, where neighbors bring her treats, and she receives lots of extra attention from fellow residents.

Jim is quick to point out that the couple didn’t have to move, they chose to move once they discovered the friendly community at Lakeview Village.

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