For many years, we have been conditioned to consider home ownership as an ideal and an absolute prerequisite of self- realization. Who does not remember buying their first house and the challenges overcome to achieve that lofty goal? Those who merely rented were always considered in some way suspect and regarded as second-class citizens.
However, more recent and more enlightened economic thinking, challenges this established idea pointing to the negative effects of home ownership, which are now seen as potentially stagnating the economy rather than contributing to its growth. Renting promotes workforce mobility. If there’s a demand for people in, say Prince Rupert, it can be met more speedily by those renting, than those with homes to sell. The evidence: take a look at Switzerland which has the lowest rate of home ownership in Europe, coupled consistently with one of the strongest economies and currencies in the world. Clearly renting works for them.
We toil away most of our lives to buy the house of our dreams, or at least a house anyway, which we then spend years and piles of cash, making it into our dream home. We cut grass, we paint inside and out, we install new kitchens and bathrooms, we put down elegant hardwood floors, build decks...does it ever end? Not in my experience.
And then, in the blink of an eye, our children are living their own independent existences miles away, and we are rattling round a massive house on our own. Welcome to the empty nest experience...now we have a house that is far too big, costs a fortune to keep warm or cool, has too many windows that need cleaning inside and out, and is full of an accumulation of stuff, which we are beginning to finally understand that we do not actually need! Then we realize that not only are we living alone, we are surrounded by other people also living alone in their empty houses. How terribly sad.
But there is an alternative, and the alternative is the Wellings in Picton. Compare moving into the Wellings: moving into the Wellings is an act of liberation...liberation from all domestic drudgery and obligations, no more cutting grass, cleaning windows or snow clearance, Rachel Henry, Manager of The Wellings, has people to do all that for you. You are free to concentrate on doing whatever you would like to do. Take that art class, learn to water ski, wrap your head around the intricacies of sub-atomic particle physics, study or volunteer...whatever you like.
Abandoning home ownership implies a loss, but one needs to concentrate on what one will gain. Firstly, a level of security, recent house price rises should leave one in a comfortable position, which may be bolstered by pensions and investment returns in the future. One modest monthly payment frees one from the responsibility of even having to remember to pay the utilities, property taxes or internet. Live carefree.
But the most important aspect of moving into the Wellings is to integrate oneself into a society of like-minded souls. For years, the medical profession has been encouraging us to get on the treadmill, eat less calories and drink less alcohol, in order to extend our life span, but the latest research indicates that those privations do very little to actually extend one’s longevity. What does? The answer is maximizing one’s meaningful social interactions...feeling purposeful, engaging with friends and enjoying society. The design of the building plays a big role in fostering community. A massive atrium which resembles an historic opera house affords space for all kinds of communal activities. Rachel Henry and her team take great steps to encourage social activities which involve all her residents and the residents themselves take social initiatives, such as developing You Tube and Facebook channels.
Picton, the small town at the intersection of art, food, wine and culture offers multi-faceted opportunities for engagement and enjoyment, with a host of established and new restaurants from which to choose. If you want to host a dinner party at the Wellings, book the private dining room and let Chef David McGowan do the rest...all you have to do is send out the invitations! Chef David has been kind enough to share one of his recipes with us: see Rack of Lamb with Mint topping in our recipe section
Maybe it is time to consider relinquishing one’s past life encumbered by the responsibilities of property ownership and embrace a new life of freedom?
See wellingingsofpicton.com for a fuller list of all the available amenities.