Whether you’re already retired or have years to go, there’s no better time to start planning for the future than the present — especially when it comes to finding a new home to settle down. After retirement and as you advance in age, your priorities for a home will change.
From finances and location to home size, here are a couple details to keep in mind as you transition into a new chapter of your life.
One of the most important factors to consider when buying your retirement home is its impact on your finances. How much money could you make by selling your current home? If you’re taking out a mortgage to pay for the new home, how long will it take you to pay it off? How much will your monthly payments be? Once you’re retired, how will your monthly cash flow change, and will your budget still be able to afford the mortgage?
Accurately calculating how much home you can afford on your retirement budget is the first step toward finding a forever home where you can live comfortably.
While you may have dreamed of retiring in a home on a beachfront, is that somewhere you’d realistically want to live 24/7? Is it worth uprooting your life and leaving your friends, family and a community you know to move somewhere more “ideal”?
When you’re looking for a location to settle down, it’s important to be realistic. For example, if you’ve always lived in the South and move up North, dealing with the winter weather may be a huge shock. And as you grow older, you may want to consider locations close to loved ones so you can easily spend more time with them.
When you think about your future home’s location, you’ll also want to consider the amenities. Living near a park can be a great place for convenient daily walks. Having a grocery store and healthcare facilities nearby can reduce the amount of time you need to drive. A home with a warranty and HOA can provide safety, maintenance and peace of mind.
There’s no right decision when it comes to downsizing or upsizing your retirement home. What you should do is smart size — take into account how you want to live and what’s important to you. If you imagine your retirement life spent relaxing at home and hosting family or friends, you may enjoy more space, but if you want less upkeep and hope to travel more, a smaller home may be the right choice.
Even if you have no trouble with your mobility now, you may want to consider certain accessibility features ahead of time, such as living in a single-story, stair-free home with walk-in showers instead of a bathtub.
Focusing on what you need in a living space in order to be safe should always be your number one priority. The benefit of owning your own home opposed to renting is that you can make adjustments for your needs after you close on your home, such as installing a mobility ramp.
Getting Ready for Retirement?
Starlight offers everything you need (and more!) in a home for retirement. We have new builds in great locations at affordable rates, with most neighborhoods including amenities. Get in touch to schedule an appointment with one of our Home Guides.