Dunwoody Pines offers a "rest and test" that lets you try out the community for a few days.

These are the top-ranked retirement homes in metro Atlanta

As the population ages, so does the need for retirement homes. And the percentage of older Americans will continue to rise, according to the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University.

»RELATED: 4 myths about retirement in Georgia

If you're looking for a metro Atlanta retirement home for yourself or a loved one, you'll of course want the best possible care, atmosphere and amenities that you can reasonably afford.

Much of your decision will be based on the level of care that you need and whether you can "age in place" at the same retirement home if you need more care in the future. You'll also want some features to help keep you active, entertained and comfortable.

The following are some of the top-ranked retirement homes in Atlanta:

Dunwoody Pines 

4355 Georgetown Square, Dunwoody. 770-285-8908.

Dunwoody Pines was praised for its location, affordability and amenities. The community's amenities include a beauty salon, outdoor swimming pool and free transportation. If you'd like to take a "rest and test," you or your loved one can stay overnight for a few days in one of the facility's guest rooms. Eating meals, joining in activities, and meeting the staff and residents will give you a better feel for whether the community is the right fit.

Brighton Gardens of Buckhead 

3088 Lenox Road NE, Atlanta. 404-418-7209.

Brighton Gardens is conveniently located near popular destinations such as Lenox Square mallPhipps Plaza and the High Museum of Art. Residents can choose from 14 floor plans, and amenities include a Hydro Bath spa, a concierge, an on-site physical therapy gym and outdoor walking trails. Activities – including a walking club, painting class and Bunco group - are scheduled throughout the day.

»RELATED: Atlanta named one of the best cities to retire

Garden Plaza at Lawrenceville 

230 Collins Industrial Way, Lawrenceville. 770-236-8333.

This retirement home emphasizes active living with a putting green as well as an indoor saltwater swimming pool and hot tub. Residents can also enjoy the theater-style media room, fine dining, an internet café and around-the-clock concierge services.

Sterling Estates

4220 Lower Roswell Road, Marietta. 678-946-4454 (East Cobb) and 3165 Dallas Highway, Marietta. 770-255-7000. (West Cobb).

Sterling Estates has retirement homes in East Cobb as well as West Cobb. The East Cobb community lets residents choose from cottages or apartment suites and also has a $1 million club-style wellness center. At West Cobb, you'll be close to downtown Marietta and can live in a cottage, garden home or apartment suite.

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