:Lifetime Writer in Sedona, Ariz.
:Dear Abby: I want to encourage your Rhode Island reader. Renting first is excellent advice. Research what you want in your new destination. Make sure it’s a growing community where transplants will be welcome.
Be outgoing. Join a church, community center or other place to meet people. No one will beat a path to your door or care about your former home. Don’t make negative comparisons to locals, and don’t cling to your old friend.
If all goes well, consider buying a twin home/duplex where you can be close but have your own space. I’m glad I moved. I now have more diverse friends than ever before.
:Retiree in South Carolina
Dear Abby: Yes — rent first to check housemate compatibility. As to a new social community, check out nearby colleges or universities. Many offer programs for creative learning in retirement or something similar. One can make friends with shared interests through classes. Also, find a local “newcomers club.”
:Nancy in Asheville, N.C.
:Dear Abby: You’re never too old to make new friends. My suggestion to the ladies would be to consider buying what is referred to as a park model (manufactured home) in an RV park. They could even try renting one in a few different parks to get a feel for the park and location. These parks have all kinds of activities going on from morning ‘til night.
:Dear Abby: Moving into an over-55 community was the perfect solution when we relocated. There was instant community with loads of activities and opportunities to make new friends.
When you buy, make sure you own the land as well as the house. Public libraries, churches, schools and nursing homes will welcome you as volunteers, and you can become as immersed in the new community as you want. We LOVE being “relocated.”
:Marjorie in Longmont, Colo.
Dear Abby is written by Abigail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.