The Villages is the best-selling community in the country (retirement or otherwise) for a reason, but not everyone who takes a look at The Villages for retirement falls under her spell.
We thought it'd be fun to compare The Villages to a number of other popular Florida retirement communities so you can see which one might come out on top for you.
We're not here to say that one community is better than another. Only you can pick the community that comes out on top in your eyes based on what you are looking for in a community.
Today let's compare some of the popular features and amenities of The Villages to those of nearby Villages of Citrus Hills.
If you enjoy this sort of thing, in my private, member’s only community for future Florida retirees, I’m comparing lots of other popular Florida retirement communities just like you see here. Learn more here… (opens in a new window)
The Villages has more holes of golf than any other community in the world, with almost 700 holes of golf spread out over 12 Championship courses (most feature 27 holes) and 42 9-hole Executive courses.
So if your dream involves waking up and playing a new track everyday, The Villages can help you achieve that.
That's assuming you can get a tee-time.
Despite the large number of courses available, because of the sheer number of people living in The Villages (more than 125,000 at last count!) it can be tougher than you might think to get a tee time.
That's especially true during the busy season which runs from about Mid-October through April.
By comparison, the Villages of Citrus Hills has 63 holes of golf spread across 4 courses, but the population here is only a fraction of what you have in The Villages, so even during the winter season, it's no problem to get a tee time.
This video gives you a look at the Skyview Clubhouse at Citrus Hills and you can see how uncrowded it actually is:
Interestingly, I hear from a lot of Villagers who tend to play the same 4 or 5 courses over and over.
One reason for this is they are playing courses near their home so they don't have to travel too far. Another reason is that 4-5 seems to be the number of courses that provides just enough variety, while also allowing for some level of mastery.
The thinking is, if you rotate through all the courses on a regular basis, you'd probably never get particularly good at any one of them, but if you play the same handful of courses on a regular basis, you'd probably get pretty good at some of them.
The Villages is smack dab in the middle of the state.
One common complaint I hear from people is that their Florida retirement dreams involved living near the water.
Then they learn that The Villages is about as far away from either coast as you can get, and they are understandably disappointed.
On the plus side though, The Villages is set up with everything you need at your fingertips, like shopping, restaurants, and medical care, and most of it is golf cart accessible.
You're just going to have to live without the beach.
It's a nature lover's dream with a ton of options for things to see and do over there, like Cedar Key, Homosassa Springs and Rainbow Springs state parks, and exciting excursions like swimming with the manatees, scalloping and much more.
At the Villages of Citrus Hills, you do have some restaurants within the community at the clubhouses, and there's also a regular lineup of entertainment available, but for other services like shopping and medical facilities you will have to leave the community.
But the good part is you won't have to go far!
New Home Choices
While there are plenty of great floorplans available in The Villages, you're pretty limited with what you can do to personalize the home.
In most cases it's pretty much take what they give you, or leave it.
At the Villages of Citrus Hills you also get a great selection of homes to choose from, BUT they are much more flexible with allowing you to personalize the homes to your liking.
Also, as far as lot selection goes, in The Villages, all new construction will be in the southern sections of the community.
At the Villages of Citrus Hills, you have a lot more choice regarding where you'd like to be within the community and aren't as limited.
Remember, It's Your Decision
So for you, will it be The Villages or do you think the Villages of Citrus Hills is worth a look?
If your heart is 100% set on The Villages, you should definitely check out my book, Inside the Bubble to learn everything you need to know before you move there.
I've been researching and writing about The Villages for more than a decade, and more than 15,000 people have bought my book and followed my advice before retiring there.
On the other hand, if you are open to exploring a great alternative to The Villages, you should definitely request more information about the Villages of Citrus Hills today.
I've had many readers over the years discover that the Villages of Citrus Hills simply fit them better and they are very happy there.