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Your Guide To Senior Living in Cary, North Carolina

How do you want to spend your retirement years, and what resources do you need in order to do that? With more senior living communities than ever before, being able to answer that question can help you, or a loved one, settle in a community that allows for that retirement vision to become a reality.

Your answer to that question is our singular focus here at Searstone Retirement Community in Cary, North Carolina. We have made it our mission since opening in November 2013 to deliver new and empowering opportunities so that our residents can have the retirement life they always imagined.

We also want to be as transparent as possible with potential residents about what the Searstone community looks and feels like in action, so that they are empowered with the knowledge to make the best choice for them when it comes to where, and how, they’ll spend some of the best years of their lives.

In short, Searstone Retirement Community is for those with something to do and somewhere to be.

…but, of course, a decision as major as where you will be spending your retirement years is not one that should be made lightly. The Searstone team has worked collaboratively to put together this resource page for you to learn about the opportunities, resources, and experiences that make up life at Searstone.

We’ll also briefly dive into the basics of what a continuing care retirement community (CCRC) is and what costs are associated with living in one. We know everyone reading this may not be at the same place in their research, so we’ll focus on CCRCs in general, but also provide specifics as they relate to Searstone.

Remember that we’re always eager to answer your questions, large or small, about any aspect of life at Searstone. If we don’t cover something here you want to learn more about, don’t hesitate to reach out!

Feel free to scroll through the full guide or click on the topics below to skip to any section.

BASICS: What is a CCRC?
LIFECARE: Coverage for Life at Searstone
VALUE: Breaking Down the Costs
LOCATION: There’s Strength in the Triangle
SERVICES & RESIDENCES: The Lay of the Land
AMENITIES: Life as a Searstone Resident
TRANSITION: Making the Move to Senior Living

What is a CCRC?


A continuing care retirement community is a type of senior living model designed for those who wish to move into a place where they will also have access to a continuum of care as they age. Those care needs can be immediate or anticipated with age.

Some CCRCs that provide a continuum of care are known as Life Care CCRCs. This Life Care benefit is not something all CCRCs offer. Searstone is a CCRC that does include a Life Care benefit to its residents.

Alternate senior living options like rental or ownership communities, typically do not cover the cost or have the healthcare structure in place to support assisted living or skilled nursing care. We believe that it’s both reassuring and financially savvy to have those healthcare resources available to residents in comfortable residential settings instead of having to relocate or travel to have those care needs met.

Life Care CCRCs like Searstone have the staffing and services in place for you or your loved one to be able to age in the community, not out of it.

Keep reading to learn about what these services and amenities are, and how a Life Plan model can also be a wise investment when thinking through your retirement financial plan.

Coverage for Life at Searstone

You’ll hear a lot about Life Care as you dive deeper into your research of CCRC models. So, what exactly is it?

Life Care is a type of CCRC contract. Not every CCRC community has Life Care agreements. Searstone does. What this means is that you or your loved one will not see rates change dramatically as health needs change. It’s the assurance that you’ll have the support when you need it and where you are.

Searstone has in place a continuum of care services to help meet our residents’ healthcare needs throughout their aging process. You may not need these services now, but you’ll have the peace of mind that they are available if, or when, you do. Searstone residents begin their experience with us as part of our independent living community, but have assisted living support as an option if their needs change with age.

Your entrance and monthly fees will cover services, amenities, and upkeep expenses, but also the full continuum of care provided at predictable costs. Searstone residents have access to assisted living, skilled nursing, and memory support services. This includes a personal care approach for things like medication management, assistance with daily-living tasks, occupational, speech and physical therapy, and dementia care, among others––all from accredited staff in private accommodations.

We encourage you to explore our assisted living, skilled nursing, and memory support services pages to see a more detailed description of what’s available. Life Care provides significant asset prevention and tax advantages for seniors, and works well with or without a Long-Term Care Insurance plan.

We know the Life Care distinction is a big deciding factor when choosing a CCRC, and our Sales Counselors would be happy to explain how these benefits work with your individual situation. We encourage you to schedule an appointment at any time to discuss.

Breaking Down the Costs

At Searstone, we know that it’s not just about finding a lifestyle that fits, but also making sure that lifestyle suits you financially.

We wanted to make this topic as simple as possible for you to navigate. Please use our MoneyGauge affordability calculator that was designed specifically to help give you a better understanding of whether Searstone may be a good fit for you financially.

The tool will walk you through seven questions resulting in a range of preliminary results so you can determine which floor plans may be the best financial match for you. (Don’t worry, your answers are secure and will not be shared with a third-party. Besides your name and email address, no personal information is required to give it a try.)

In addition, our website also takes a deeper dive into monthly fees, entrance fees, tax advantages,  and long-term insurance plans so you can see exactly what you’re paying into when you join the Searstone community.

There’s Strength in the Triangle

“Location, location, location,” as they say, and they’re most certainly right! Where your home sits will play such a large role in what your day to day looks like. It will help decide your go-to local hotspots for food, your choices in evening entertainment, and just how convenient it will be to travel to and from destinations that interest you.

The Searstone community in Cary is in close proximity to Durham, Raleigh and Chapel Hill, the three cities that make up the Research Triangle. The Triangle is also home to three major research universities: North Carolina State University, Duke University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Searstone sits in the Triangle’s footprint, meaning that residents are in close proximity to not just things like the medical centers, universities, and research facilities, but also the rich arts and entertainment culture that helps foster the university communities and beyond. Locals enjoy experiencing modern art at the Nasher Museum of Art in Durham, performances by the NC Symphony, and the historical farms and nature trails that surround the area. Check out our Neighborhood page for a quick reference of distance to some of the area’s popular spots.

The Research Triangle is a magnet for interesting people who are drawn to the area for its inquisitive culture and abundant parks and natural spaces. It’s why some of our current residents decided to plant roots here for their retirement years. Historians, academics, scientists, artists––the interesting characters that Searstone has curated only adds to the existing roster of talent and brain power in the Triangle.

The Lay of the Land

Likely, it will be The Highview where you or a loved one may call home if you decide on Searstone. The Highview is our four-story expansion coming in 2024 that we’re absolutely thrilled about. The 152 modern home designs in the heart of Cary will also feature a 5,000-square-foot auditorium and arts center, a terrace for dining al fresco, a Chophouse-style restaurant, tavern and a marketplace. Learn more about priority registration for The Highview that comes with Priority Club benefits. We’ll be sure to keep you updated with progress updates if you’re interested in learning more as this project moves along!

These private homes in Woodside and Creekside estates come in 10 different styles of one-, two-, or three-story homes. They’re available with attached two-car garages and options like elevators and finished basements. Take a look at floor plans.

If lakefront views right from your patio sounds like a “sign me up!” then you definitely should inquire about openings at Lorraine Plaza. Many of the one- and two-bedroom residences feature bay windows overlooking the sparkling lake (resident swans included!) at the center of the community. It’s just a short walk to the Winston Clubhouse, which you’ll read about in a moment. Check it out.

This is another option for those looking to bask in a light-filled sunroom or enjoy the breeze off their patio––did we mention there is no wrong choice here? Calais Terrace is made up of nine different floor plans with one- and two-bedroom options. You’d be steps from the fitness center, pool, beauty salon and clubhouse activities. Sound perfect? Learn more.

We consider the Winston Clubhouse our hub around here for the community’s social and cultural life. Clubhouse homes are the most cozy and convenient to our dining venues, cocktails lounge, grand ballroom, fitness center and pool. You can select between eight one- and two-bedroom floor plans with special architectural touches to suit your fancy––from a room-size balcony (that’s what retirement dreams are made of!) to a turret with a sunroom. Start exploring the Winston Clubhouse.

These two-bedroom, two-bath floor plans with balconies and covered parking include corner, natural gas fireplaces as a standard feature and large windows with a perfect sunset view at Searstone. Lakeside Flats also come with generous storage units if you’re not quite ready to downsize when moving into senior living. See the floor plans.

Life as a Searstone Resident

Amenities are a favorite topic when researching CCRCs. Who doesn’t want a glimpse into all the luxuries and convenient services that will be available to you? At Searstone, we want to provide you with everything you’ll need so you can kick back and relax in your retirement years. You earned it.

No matter which home under the Searstone community you or a loved one moves into, you can rest assured that it was designed with luxury and comfort top-of-mind. Spacious, open floor plans with ample storage, regular housekeeping and linen service, stylish kitchens with full-size appliances, conveniently located parking, and additional storage solutions are all included. Also included: utilities, property insurance and taxes! When you compare our services and amenities packages to the bills you’re paying at home, the value of CCRC living becomes so apparent.

The Searstone team has a 24/7 concierge service available, as well as transportation services to connect you with retail, restaurants, medical offices––whatever is on the agenda for your day. If the plan is to stay local and relax, there are beautifully appointed common areas, outdoor walking paths, a library, game room, and full-time Life Enrichment Coordinator working to bring you whatever activities you’d like to experience to the community. There is a community garden, language classes, and wine club, among other activities that you can enjoy on-site.

Our full-time Director of Resident Life & Wellness focuses on wellness programs for residents. That includes engaging programs focused on the eight dimensions of wellness: social, intellectual, spiritual, environmental, physical, nutritional, outreach, and cultural. You’ll have access to a fitness center, salon and massage area, and indoor swimming pool & spa as you wish.

You’ll also have peace of mind that you or your loved one are safe with Searstone’s 24-hour security and emergency response program.

Take a look at our photo gallery if you want to visualize life at Searstone a little more, or hear about it first-hand from some current residents.

Making the Move to Senior Living

You may already know you or a loved one will be looking to move into a CCRC in the next few years. If this is the case, we can’t stress enough how important it is to start the conversations early about what needs to happen before that time comes.

Have transparent discussions with your family about plans for selling the home you currently live in, talk through logistics of how you’d be getting from Point A to Point B, and set a timeline for when you think that transition would make sense for your current situation.

For all the uncertainty surrounding life in retirement, there is one universal truth. Whether we choose to stay at home, to relocate to a smaller residence, to move in with a relative or to make the move into a CCRC, sooner is often better.

If you want to make Searstone a part of those conversations as well, we’d love to send you an information package with more details, including floor plans and photos of our community in Cary. You can request that information online or even book an appointment to see it for yourself.