As you get closer and closer to retirement, it’s time to start thinking about where you want to live. The big question on every almost-retirees mind is whether to stay in their home or buy a new one.
Take a long, hard look at your current home to assess whether or not you can renovate it to fit your retirement needs. If it has a long winding staircase, lots of empty rooms not being used, and hefty maintenance needs, it might be time to downsize.
As you begin searching for the perfect home for your retirement, here are some things to keep in mind.
Look Into Affordability
Although you’ve probably saved up a tremendous amount of money for your retirement, your monthly income is now one average sum. As such, it’s important to find a home that is affordable and convenient.
Be mindful of the additional costs associated with buying a home—especially if you’re purchasing one in an active adult community with higher HOA fees.
Check Your Equity in Your Current Home
Depending on how long you’ve owned your current home, you may have built up a lot of equity.
As a result, you can use this money to help fund your next home purchase—therefore, lowering or even eliminating those monthly mortgage payments.
Consider a Maintenance-Free Community
Do you really want to spend your retirement years performing yard work or exterior maintenance?
A condominium or townhouse with low-maintenance options may be exactly what you’re looking for. Forget shoveling snow in the winter and cleaning gutters! Let someone else take care of that for you.
Don’t Forget About Security
Unfortunately, older residents are often the target of break-ins and scams. Look for a home in a community with an onsite security guard.
If you’ve fallen in love with a home that’s not included in an HOA, consider installing additional security features.
For Retirement, Convenience is Key
Lastly, make sure that your home is near all the retirement amenities you’re looking forward to! If you’re an avid golfer, it should be a quick drive away from your favorite course.
For outdoor enthusiasts, consider buying a home close to a big park like Umstead State Park. If you have grandchildren in the area, look into buying a home in their neighborhood or close by. The best part of retirement is getting to pick and choose how you spend your days, so you’ll want your home to be as close to your favorite activities as possible.
The Bottom Line
Whether you’re choosing to stay in your current home for retirement or find a new one, it’s important to make sure it will be a good fit for your retirement lifestyle.