There’s more to successful retirement planning than making sure you have enough money. Where you’re going to live as you get older is also an important part of that picture. You no longer have to live somewhere to be close to your job. With so many options, it can be difficult to figure out what’s right for you.
There are plenty of factors that will play into your decision: budget, accessibility, location, and proximity to family are at the top of the list. Taking a close look at these will help you narrow down your search.
Talk to a financial advisor about how much you can afford to spend on a new home. Do your retirement plans depend on using equity from your current home? You don’t necessarily need to move into a smaller home. By changing locations, you can downsize on price, not size.
Since you’re retiring, you have the freedom to move somewhere with lower real estate prices. Urban housing markets are considerably more expensive than small towns where you can get more for your budget.
Don’t neglect ongoing expenses, even if you plan on buying your new home outright. Find out what you can expect to pay in property taxes, utilities, or any housing association or condo fees.
And remember that if you buy a quality new home your maintenance cost will be next to nothing for a long time to come. You shouldn’t have any major repairs for at least 20 years out!
#2 Accessibility & Adaptability
Keep in mind your future mobility. As you get older, your mobility changes, and you need a home that will be able to get around independently in the future. In your earlier years of retirement it may not be top of mind, but you will want to look for a home that is equipped for “Living in Place” and will work as you age.
Bungalows and bungalow townhomes are great options to consider. New home builders like Blythwood Homes in Niagara on the Lake, Ontario build bungalow townhomes that comes with lawn maintenance and snow removal services. Having exterior maintenance handled for you is perfect as you get older, not to mention ideal for retirees who have lots of travel as part of their retirement plan. Moving into custom homes by Blythwood Homes lets you lock the door behind you and travel worry-free.
You can live anywhere, but what if you want to stay right where you are? It’s often possible to find a home in your community that will more closely fit your needs as you get older. Consider looking for elements such as:
- Being closer to public transit, shopping, amenities, health services, etc., so that you’re free to walk for exercise and not dependent on your car;
- Accessibility and adaptability as above;
- A smaller or less expensive place.
Staying in your community can also be a good way to stay in touch family, friends, and other social connections you’ve made over the years.
One problem of staying close by is trying to find places designed for “Living in Place” longer term.
On the other hand, you might not have to go far to find a dream retirement destination. Now is a great time to start exploring the small towns and country around where you live. Florida isn’t your only option!
Where you choose to live will shape your retirement. Find the right location and talk to new home builders about finding the perfect house to retire in.