As you age, you probably start to think more and more about retirement—namely, how you’ll support yourself after you stop working. And one of the biggest, and at times most overlooked, aspects of post-career planning is housing. Where you live plays an important role in your daily life and your overall financial stability, so planning for your retirement home is critical to planning for your retirement.
Tips for Planning for Your Retirement Home
Why is retirement housing so important? Well, for one, because it’s a necessity. For another, your home has the potential to be both your largest asset and your largest expense. And lastly because retirement housing comes with a few options, each with its own pros and cons.
Here are some options for your retirement home, plus the pros and cons of each.
Aging in place
Aging in place simply means remaining in your current home for as long as possible. It’s convenient, and for many homeowners, there’s a strong sense of attachment to a home they’ve lived in for a long time. However, it’s possible that you’ve outgrown your current home, which could leave you with a lot of extra space to care for and maintain. You might also be paying more for your home—in upkeep and utilities if not the mortgage—which might be more difficult on a fixed income.
Relocating & downsizing
Did you choose your current home for its proximity to your work or maybe to schools? Once you hit retirement, you probably won’t need to stay in the same location, which could open you up to move closer to a destination or amenity, like a park, downtown, or entertainment area.
If you sell your current home and buy a new one, this gives you the opportunity to choose a new location AND to purchase a house with a more manageable size, and possibly a lower price tag. Moving, however, isn’t without its downsides, like learning a new area, paying agent and closing fees, and of course, the actual act of moving.
Renting might be an option if you’re considering moving to a new location, or if you don’t want to deal with the expenses and upkeep associated with homeownership. It might also allow you to free up a large amount of equity in the form of a home sale. Renting, however, is unappealing to many current homeowners, and does come with a certain sense of instability or impermanence.
Active Adult living
Some neighborhoods are structured around an age-restricted community. What this means is that a certain number of residents within the community fall within a certain age range (usually 55+). These neighborhoods have become increasingly popular for their sense of community; they often come packed full of activities, classes, groups, and amenities that encourage activity and socialization. Moving to an Active Adult community does come with the usual downsides of moving, though, like packing up, relocating, and selling your current home.
Continuing care or assisted living
If you or someone in your household will require extra care or assistance in the coming years, it might be worth looking into a continuing care community. These often start off as independent living, but can adjust to offer increasing levels of support and care as residents age. These communities offer the assurance that you’ll truly be able to “age in place” without worry of having to relocate again in some years, but can definitely be more costly.
Need Help Deciding What’s Right for You?
Planning for your retirement home but not quite sure what’s right for you? We can help! Contact the Walk at East Village today to learn more about Clayton’s top Active Adult community, what it has to offer, and how you might fit into the fabric of this fantastic neighborhood. We’d love to help you find your forever home in Clayton, NC.