What is The Villages? Battling coronavirus, Florida retirement community boasts 128K residents

At least 71 residents of The Villages reportedly tested positive for COVID-19

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On Monday, President Trump tweeted his praise of The Villages and how the Florida retirement community has handled the coronavirus pandemic.

“Congratulations to all of my many friends at The Villages in Florida on having done so well, and with such great spirit, during these rather unusual times,” Trump tweeted, in part. “So proud of everyone!”

HOW MUCH DO RETIREMENT HOMES COST?

The Villages -- for people 55 years old and up -- is one of the largest retirement communities in the U.S., according to The Wall Street Journal.

Located about an hour north of Orlando, The Villages has about 60,000 households and 128,000 residents, The Journal reported.

Thus far, The Journal reported, at least 71 residents have tested positive for COVID-19, though the number could be higher.

A resident of The Villages gets tested for coronavirus at drive-through site that accomodates golf carts on Monday, March 23, 2020. Testing site was operated by UF Health, with medical students performing tests. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/Tribune

“There is clearly an opportunity for it to take off and cause problems,” Glenn Morris, director of the University of Florida Emerging Pathogens Institute told The Journal. “At least right at the moment, things appear stable.”

Here’s what else you need to know about The Villages.

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The community is made up of 12 districts with smaller villages that have amenities including restaurants, shops, golf courses and other recreation.

Some of those amenities -- within the 32-square-mile property of the community -- include 12 Championship golf courses and 35 executive courses as well as three local libraries, three movie theaters and three “uniquely themed town squares” -- much like a downtown, according to the FAQ page.

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The Villages also has its own hospital and a public safety department with an EMT and fire department.

The Villages, a retirment community in Florida.

According to the website, living costs are estimated to be about $1,010 per month, based on a $250,000 home with a home exemption of about $993.

Those living costs cover the average payments for water, sewer, gas and electric, trash collection, basic cable, insurance and average taxes, as well as a community amenity fee and Development District Assessment.

However, monthly costs vary based on the size of a home, the community website said. The Villages offers a variety of homes and villas.

The median household income in The Villages from 2014 to 2018 was $61,533, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

In October, Trump visited The Villages to unveil an executive order to expand private-sector Medicare.

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