A Brand New Start: Independent Living

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elder couple in independent community in fairfax virginiaWhen Hart & Martha Sebring decided to move into a retirement community, it was a major decision in their lives.

Hart, a retired Navy Captain, had spent almost 30 years in the Navy after graduating from the Naval Academy. He was a surface warfare officer having commanded three ships during his career–a Mine Hunter, a Guided Missile Destroyer and a Guided Missile Cruiser. The Sebrings moved many times in response to Hart’s orders. As Martha used to say, “Two years are up-time to move.”

The couple enjoyed the many places they lived-including the south of France while Hart was assigned to the staff of the Commander of the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean. Most of Hart’s shore tours were in the Washington, D.C. area, and they were living in Fairfax, VA when he retired from the Navy.

During one of his monthly Naval Academy Class luncheons, a classmate discussed his decision to put a deposit on a retirement community in Annapolis. The Sebrings realized it was time to get serious about selecting a retirement community for themselves.

Although they had been discussing retirement living options for some time, they had not made any serious plans. They now realized that the house they had purchased eight years earlier had become too large for just the two of them. They were ready to move.

After exploring several communities in the Fairfax area and Annapolis, the Sebrings found The Woodlands Retirement Community, a new independent living retirement community in Fairfax, which is scheduled to begin construction soon and is expected to open at the end of 2006 or the beginning of 2007. They were initially drawn to the community because of its excellent location.

“We are well established in this area-with lots of friends and an active membership in our country club, which is nearby. We knew we wanted to stay in this area, and that makes The Woodlands a perfect choice,” says Martha.

While researching the community, the Sebrings were impressed by the comprehensive care The Woodlands could offer. As part of the Bainum Healthcare Family, The Woodlands will provide independent living to its active residents, who will have priority admission to The Gardens at Fair Oaks, their assisted living community, or Fairfax Nursing Center should additional care become necessary.

The couple was impressed by their visit to The Gardens at Fair Oaks and even more excited about the new community plans. The Woodlands will only have 110 units, which appealed to them because it “gives more of a community feel.” The full range of amenities that will be offered was an immediate draw as well.

Hart points out, “The community will have a fitness center and a swimming pool, as well as underground parking; they also offer quite a few incentives to new residents.” One incentive is the 100% refundable entrance fee that the Woodlands offers.

Having made their decision, the Sebrings have encouraged their friends to follow suit. The fact that several of their friends will join them as initial residents at The Woodlands will certainly help them settle in quickly.

While having some old friends around will be great, the Sebrings are also looking forward to meeting other new residents. Being among the first residents of a new community will make the transition easier and the residents closer, the Sebrings believe. Hart says, “It’ll be new to everyone, so we’ll be in it together.”

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