Retirement in Florida vs. New Jersey

How to Evaluate Retirement in Florida vs. New Jersey

Beautiful Florida tree-lined street with homesAt StrawBerry Ridge near Tampa, we have a number of residents who made the big decision to retire to Florida instead of staying put in their home state of New Jersey. Both Florida and New Jersey have a lot to offer retirees, including many miles of beautiful beaches where sun-bathing, shell-hunting, and bird-watching opportunities abound. Both states offer casinos and other attractions that make fantastic group trip opportunities, which can help older adults build lasting friendships.

But Florida has long reigned as one of the top retiree destinations in the world, and there are some obvious reasons why. If you’re trying to decide the merits of retirement in Florida vs. New Jersey, here are some things to consider:

Cost of Living

Florida easily outshines the Garden State when it comes to offering retirees a lower cost of living, with just about everything, from groceries to utilities to housing expenses, costing less in Florida.

Fewer Taxes

Unlike New Jersey, Florida does not collect a state tax on income.


This is one of those areas where personal preference comes in. Although Florida has its own rhythms when it comes to spring, summer, fall, and winter, the differences in temperature are not nearly as pronounced as in New Jersey, and many retirees who move to Florida from the North say they miss the fall colors. However, there’s a reason why Florida has been dubbed the Sunshine State – rarely does weather interfere with outdoor activities like fishing, boating, golfing, sightseeing, and more.

At StrawBerry Ridge, we take pride in making an active Florida lifestyle affordable and pleasant for our residents from New Jersey and many other states. We offer an abundance of resort-style amenities for our residents to enjoy, including an indoor pool, an outdoor pool, a woodworking shop, and two spacious clubhouses. We also help our residents stretch their retirement savings to the max by offering safe, comfortable manufactured housing for sale in a beautiful gated setting. If you’re trying to evaluate the merits of retirement in Florida vs. New Jersey, we’ll be happy to provide you with a firsthand look.  Contact us today to schedule a tour of StrawBerry Ridge the next time you’re in the Tampa area.

Finding Friends After Retirement

StrawBerry Ridge near Tampa, FL, Makes Finding Friends After Retirement a Piece of (Short)Cake

Finding friends after retirement is one of the top challenges for older adults, experts say, explaining that the time-honored ways of meeting new people through work, church, and other social networks often disappear for retirees. This can be a dangerous trend, as loneliness and social isolation have been linked to adverse physical and mental health effects in older adults.

However, many residents of StrawBerry Ridge say they’ve had no trouble finding friends after they decided to spend their retirement in our warm and friendly community for active adults 55 and older. Our beautiful gated community near Tampa, Florida, has some of the most enviable amenities for older adults – including two clubhouses, indoor and outdoor pools, a woodworking shop, and a ceramics studio – and these amenities make it easier for our residents to join in activities that help them develop close friendships. What’s more, we take pride in offering an affordable active lifestyle – another important factor in reducing stress for retirees so they can get more enjoyment out of their golden years.

How Do We Do It?

We offer high-quality manufactured homes for sale – many with luxury features – in an attractive neighborhood setting. Then, for a low monthly home site lease payment, our residents can enjoy all the resort-style amenities at StrawBerry Ridge whenever they want. We also offer a wide variety of group activities that encourage our residents to get to know one another. For example, picture yourself:

  • Crafting a masterpiece as part of the Berry Clay Pit Ceramics Group
  • Sampling an assortment of delicious toppings at our community’s all-you-can-eat Ice Cream Social
  • Heading out with the Red Hat Mammas to the Wooden Spoon Diner to sample fried egg sandwiches or luscious Maryland-style crab cakes

To get a better idea of all the happenings that help our residents find friends after retirement, take a look at our newsletter. Or contact our Lifestyle Team today for more information and to schedule a tour of our community when you’re in the Tampa area.

Tampa Retirement Communities

Enjoy the Sweet Life at StrawBerry Ridge, a Rare Find Among Tampa-Area Retirement Communities

StrawBerry Ridge is a lovely, gated retirement community of high-caliber manufactured homes located on the outskirts of Tampa, FL. Many visitors choose to move here after seeing our amenities, including indoor and outdoor swimming pools and two spacious clubhouses, which provide space for a fully equipped woodworking shop and a ceramics studio, among other meeting spaces.

However, the reason newcomers give most often for choosing StrawBerry Ridge over other Tampa retirement communities is the warm welcome they receive from our residents. And that genuine friendliness stems from the feeling of camaraderie that thrives at StrawBerry Ridge, thanks to the year-round activities made possible by our ideal Central Florida location and resort-style amenities.

What’s Happening at StrawBerry Ridge?

  • Veterans Group – Are you a veteran of our armed forces? Thanks in part to our close proximity to MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, there’s a sizable contingent of veterans who call our retirement community If you’re a veteran, you’ll feel right at home joining in our celebrations to commemorate Flag Day and other patriotic events.
  • Red Hat Mammas – Join this group for planned excursions to nearby communities like Lake Alfred, home to intriguing antique shops and garden centers.
  • Travel Club – Take part in group trips to New Orleans and other exciting destinations in the company of friends and neighbors who share your interests.

What’s more, the close proximity of our retirement community to Tampa means you can enjoy visiting beaches, theme parks, casinos, professional and college sports venues, art and science museums, and many more attractions on your own or in a group of friendly neighbors.

Contact us today to learn more about the many activities that StrawBerry Ridge has to offer, or click here to view our monthly newsletter. Our Lifestyle Team will also be happy to help you set up a visit to our retirement community whenever you’re in the Tampa area.

Woodworking in Retirement Central FL

StrawBerry Ridge Is a Great Central Florida 55+ Community Where You Can Enjoy the Benefits of Woodworking in Retirement

For some older adults, one of the downsides of retiring to Florida is leaving behind the well-equipped woodworking shop they may have built and stocked with tools over the years. In fact, for many of these craftsmen, spending more time creating furniture or knickknacks by hand is part of the allure of retirement. Fortunately, there’s a terrific Central Florida community for active adults 55 and older that has a spacious, fully equipped woodworking shop available for residents’ use. It’s StrawBerry Ridge, located just outside of Tampa, FL. Whether you’re an avid wood crafter already or you’ve been thinking about taking up woodworking in retirement, you owe it to yourself to see the facilities at this beautiful community.

There are many benefits of pursuing woodworking in retirement, including keeping the mind and body active. Moreover, some retirees are able to generate income by selling their handiwork online or at a craft show, of which there are many to be found throughout Central Florida. However, one of the top benefits of woodworking at StrawBerry Ridge is the camaraderie our residents enjoy when sharing their hobby with neighbors.

In fact, there’s a Woodworkers Club that offers classes to help members hone their skills. The group also organizes fundraisers to support the club’s annual Christmas Toy Program, in which members make pull toys, dollhouses, and other wooden toys to give to children in need. The club also uses funds to provide store-bought toys for the giveaway.

Never a Dull Moment at StrawBerry Ridge

In addition to the opportunities for residents to pursue woodworking in our beautifully landscaped retirement community, we offer numerous other organized activities at StrawBerry Ridge so that we’re sure to have something for everyone. To get an idea of what we have to offer, click here to view our monthly newsletter.

StrawBerry Ridge is a gated community of high-quality manufactured homes, along with two community clubhouse complexes. We take pride in offering the finest in resort-style retirement living at a price that’s affordable for many older adults on a budget. Come see what we have to offer! Contact us today to schedule a community tour whenever you plan to visit Central Florida.

Importance of Activities at Senior Communities

At StrawBerry Ridge, We Know the Importance of Scheduling Activities at Senior Communities

If you’re one of the many active older adults scouting for a place to call home in retirement, you’ll definitely want to consider relocating to a community that caters to residents age 55 and up. These communities typically offer amenities like a clubhouse, swimming pool, and fitness center, which provide a convenient way for mature adults to stay physically fit and socially engaged with their neighbors.

At StrawBerry Ridge, a 55+ community on the edge of exciting Tampa, Florida, we offer an abundance of resort-style amenities, where our residents enjoy daily access to two spacious clubhouses, sports facilities, and indoor and outdoor pools. But we don’t stop there. We know the importance of providing a wide variety of organized activities at our senior community as a way to prevent feelings of isolation that can rob older adults of their health and enjoyment of life. As a matter of fact, experts say lonely seniors are twice as likely to die prematurely as their socially connected counterparts. What’s more, recent surveys have shown that the number of seniors reporting chronic feelings of loneliness has doubled since the 1980s.

StrawBerry Ridge Is the Antidote

At StrawBerry Ridge, we have an extremely active community of residents who take advantage of the beautiful amenities we provide – including a ceramics studio and woodworking shop – to schedule organized events. Recently, those events have included a monthly Saturday morning coffee gathering, a Spades and Movie Night viewing of Ocean’s 11 , games like Mahjong and Mexican Train Dominoes, yoga classes, and other opportunities for neighbors to get together and become friends. To get a better idea of all the happenings at StrawBerry Ridge, click here for our monthly newsletter.

In addition to recognizing the importance of scheduled activities, StrawBerry Ridge stands out among senior communities for providing an affordable lifestyle. We do this by providing beautiful manufactured homes for sale. These homes are complemented by our resort-style amenities and attractive neighborhood setting, which our residents enjoy for their low monthly home site lease payment. Contact us today for more information about the benefits of moving to StrawBerry Ridge near Tampa, FL.

Why Is Play Important for Older Adults?

Why Is Play Important for Older Adults?

Florida has a well-deserved reputation as America’s playground, where people of all ages can find plenty of fun activities at pretty much any time of year. If you’re like many people who retire to Florida from Illinois, you’re naturally eager to leave the blizzards and frigid temperatures of winter behind. But you’re also looking for more than that, including lots of opportunities to play hard now that your years of working hard are over.

You’ll be happy to know that science is behind you 100 percent. Experts say communities for active adults 55 and older that offer a wide variety of convenient ways to enjoy life and mingle with others provide valuable benefits that can:

  • Keep your mind sharp and help prevent memory loss
  • Establish and maintain healthy relationships with other people, a key component of happiness
  • Improve your outlook on life, reduce stress, and potentially ward off depression
  • Increase your energy level, help you cope better with aches and pains, and lower the risk of illness

At StrawBerry Ridge, We Know How to Play

If you’d like to discover a 55+ community that goes beyond the norm to offer our residents an abundance of activities to pursue in the company of friendly neighbors, then you’ll want to schedule a tour of StrawBerry Ridge near Tampa, FL. We offer high-quality manufactured homes for sale in an attractive, gated neighborhood setting and, for a low monthly home site lease payment, our residents enjoy daily access to numerous resort-style amenities, including two swimming pools – one indoors and one outside.

What’s more, there’s never a dull moment at StrawBerry Ridge. Weekly events include line dancing, rhythm band practice, and many more group activities. Our Travel Club recently returned from a trip to the Big Top at Circus Sarasota, where they enjoyed watching daring aerial feats and listening to live music.

Sound intriguing? We’ll be happy to show you around StrawBerry Ridge when you’re visiting the Tampa area from Illinois. Contact us today to book your community tour. In the meantime, read our newsletter to learn about all the activities our residents enjoy on a regular basis.

Questions When Buying into FL 55+ Community

Questions to Ask When You’re from Indiana & You’re Buying into a Florida 55+ Community

Relocating to Florida for retirement has become almost a tradition for many people from Indiana and other Snowbelt states, but that doesn’t mean choosing a 55+ community to call home will be easy. The exact location of your new home will undoubtedly be important to you, as will the home itself and the resort-style amenities you’ll be able to enjoy as a community resident. In other words, what will you get for your investment?

At StrawBerry Ridge, a gated community of high-quality manufactured homes on the edge of Tampa, we take pride in offering an affordable Florida lifestyle. We’d be delighted to answer any questions you may have about relocating to our community for active adults 55 and older. In fact, here are some great questions to ask before you buy into any 55+ community:

What activities can I enjoy after I move here?

StrawBerry Ridge is one of the few 55+ communities that has a fully equipped woodworking shop, as well as a ceramics studio. These facilities not only allow our residents to enjoy their favorite pastimes but also encourage social activities, including a recent Pancake Breakfast that was attended by over 200 residents. We also have two spacious clubhouses, which make it easy to have fun get-togethers like our recent Spring Frolic Dance. What’s more, the new Gun Club is planning to host gun safety and concealed weapons classes. The Red Hat Mammas are planning an extravaganza, and the Travel Club is planning a group excursion to New Orleans. For more information about community activities, check out our newsletter.

What activities can I enjoy without driving too far?

Because of our community’s terrific location near Tampa, StrawBerry Ridge residents can easily take in a professional hockey, football, or spring training baseball game. What’s more, the large Seminole Hard Rock casino complex, offering exciting games, dining, and shopping opportunities, is about a 20-minute drive from our location.

The best way to learn about all we have to offer at StrawBerry Ridge is to schedule a community tour. Contact our Lifestyle Team today and we’ll be happy to put you on the calendar the next time you’re visiting this area from Indiana.

Affordable Retirement Communities South Florida

South Florida Residents Looking for Affordable Retirement Communities Can Find Their Paradise Close to Home – at StrawBerry Ridge

If you live in South Florida and you’re thinking about retiring to an active 55+ community, you probably don’t want to cut back on the leisure activities you enjoy most – in fact, you probably want to spend more time doing them. What’s more, you’re not used to worrying much about winter weather when you make your plans, which means you’d probably like to relocate to a retirement community in the Sunshine State. But, with the increase in real estate prices, you may be concerned that you won’t be able to afford the active Florida lifestyle you’ve been counting on enjoying during retirement.

Stop worrying! One of the most affordable retirement communities anywhere is an easy drive away. It’s StrawBerry Ridge in Valrico, FL, a beautifully landscaped, resort-style community of attractive manufactured homes for active adults 55 and older. When you purchase one of the homes for sale at StrawBerry Ridge, you’ll likely pay far less than you would for a site-built home in a similar setting, but you won’t feel like you’re sacrificing your retirement dreams. That’s because, for your low monthly home site lease payment, you’ll be able to enjoy daily access to a wealth of community amenities, including two clubhouses, indoor and outdoor pools, tennis and pickleball courts, a woodworking shop, and many others.

Lots of Activities to Keep You Busy

At StrawBerry Ridge, we’re not satisfied that ours is one of the most affordable retirement communities – we want to make it the best value you can find! That’s why there’s never a shortage of things to do inside our gates, thanks to our wide variety of classes and clubs that offer something for everyone. Plus, our ideal location a little east of Tampa makes it easy for our residents to plan group trips to theme parks, beaches, historic sites, nature parks, and one of the nation’s biggest casinos.

Schedule a Tour

We’ll be happy to show you around our community the next time you’re visiting the Tampa area from South Florida. We’re sure you’ll agree that StrawBerry Ridge is not only one of the most affordable retirement communities, it’s also one of the most exciting places to live. Contact our Lifestyle Team today to book your tour.

Places to Retire in FL for Ohio Residents

A Welcoming Atmosphere & Active Lifestyle Make StrawBerry Ridge One of the Best Places in Florida for Ohio Residents to Retire

One thing that StrawBerry Ridge has in common with the state of Ohio is the friendliness of its residents. If you review our website testimonials, you’ll see that more than anything else, our residents say the friendly attitude and camaraderie they enjoy at StrawBerry Ridge make it one of the best places to retire in Florida.

“If you’re looking for a place to retire, you couldn’t do any better than StrawBerry Ridge,” says resident John DiBeneditto. “Once you drive through those gates … everybody seems to say hello and wave, everybody smiles, everybody is always walking around, talking. It’s just so friendly I don’t see how anyone would choose any other place than StrawBerry Ridge to live.”

StrawBerry Ridge is a gated, resort-style community for active adults 55 and older that’s located just outside Tampa, FL. Our staff is proud of our reputation as a welcoming community, as well as the many compliments we receive from residents who appreciate our well-tended grounds and the many activities they can enjoy only steps from their homes.

An Affordable Active Lifestyle

We’re also proud to offer many older adults an affordable Florida lifestyle that doesn’t scrimp on the things that really matter, such as staying physically fit, learning new things with classes and clubs, and indulging in crafts and woodworking – all while spending time with friendly neighbors. We do this by offering attractive, low-maintenance manufactured homes for sale, many with the same type of luxury features as site-built homes but typically costing much less. Then, for a low monthly home site lease payment, each of our residents enjoys daily access to two community clubhouses, indoor and outdoor pools, a fitness center, and numerous facilities for sports and games.

Things to Do Outside Our Gates

With beautiful beaches, sports venues, cultural centers, one of the nation’s largest casinos, and other attractions only a short drive away, StrawBerry Ridge residents don’t have to travel far to find ways to stay busy. However, whenever wanderlust takes hold, our residents can venture to farther-flung destinations outside the area, state, and country in the company of friends through trips planned by our Travel Club.

We invite you to see for yourself why so many people from Ohio and elsewhere say StrawBerry Ridge is one of the best places to retire in Florida! Contact us today to schedule a tour of our community.

Tampa Retirement Communities for Illinois Residents

Are You an Illinois Resident Looking at Retirement Communities near Tampa? Don’t Overlook StrawBerry Ridge

It’s not unusual for people from Illinois to start checking out retirement communities in the Tampa area when they’re ready to shuck their fulltime jobs in favor of an active lifestyle for adults 55 and older. Many of today’s retirees are not ready to slow down – they just want to devote their energies to something besides work. And Tampa – recently named by WalletHub as one of the best cities to retire to – offers the perfect playground for older adults who want to enjoy all the best things about retirement living.

At StrawBerry Ridge, we understand that zest for living. Our community of manufactured homes for active adults 55 and older is not only located a short drive from metro Tampa, but it’s packed with resort-style amenities that make it easy for retirees to exercise, socialize, pursue their favorite hobbies, and just generally enjoy life. Plus, there’s something about this close-knit community that kindles strong friendships. In fact, a number of our residents originally from Illinois say they came here for the active lifestyle but stayed for the camaraderie. That’s one of the many things about StrawBerry Ridge that place it among the best retirement communities in the Tampa area.

An Affordable Active Lifestyle

If you’re like many older adults choosing a retirement community, affordability is a big part of your selection criteria. After all, the active retirement lifestyle you’re envisioning won’t be too enjoyable if you’re stressing out about finances. Fortunately, StrawBerry Ridge is one of the most affordable Tampa-area retirement communities. We offer attractive manufactured homes for sale in a beautifully landscaped neighborhood setting complete with electronic-access gates. When you buy one of these homes and make low monthly home site lease payments, you’ll be able to enjoy daily use of two clubhouses, two pools, fitness and sports facilities, workshops for crafts and ceramics, and many other amenities.

Not only that, but if you want to keep working, the Tampa area has some of the best employment opportunities for older adults in the state.

Come see for yourself why StrawBerry Ridge is one of the best retirement communities in the Tampa area! Contact us today to schedule a tour of the community the next time you’re visiting this area from Illinois.