Jacksonville Property Management Blog
House hunting is never easy, especially after you retire. Not only do you have to go through the whole buying process, but this is also probably the last property you'll buy. It's a house you'll live in for the rest of your life. Therefore, you have to consider many factors before you make the final decision. For example, you'll have to think about your needs more than your wants when purchasing a retirement home. It's not going to be an easy journey, but if done right, it's going to be worth it. That's why we're giving you house hunting tips for after you retire. So, let's see how to find the perfect home for you!
As you get older, you won't be as agile and flexible as you were. This is an important factor to consider when house hunting after you retire. Therefore, one thing you cannot overlook in your new house is accessibility. This implies a universal design when it comes to floorplan. What do we mean by this? For example, make sure the bathroom is close to your bedroom and kitchen to the dining room and living room. Additionally, all these rooms need to be easily accessible. In other words, make sure to purchase a home with a cohesive space that won't cause any problems in the future.
Additionally, think about the entryway. You need to make sure the front door is big enough - you may need a walker or a wheelchair in the future, or you already do. Also, stairs on the porch are something you want to avoid for similar reasons.
Speaking of stairs, purchasing a two-story house is not ideal if you're retired. Just imagine having a bedroom upstairs and going up and down multiple times a day. It's simply not convenient. That's why we suggest avoiding houses with stairs and going for one-story ones. As far as house hunting tips for after you retire go, choosing accessibility is by far the most important one.
The truth is you won't be needing as much space once you retire. Yes, having a few guest bedrooms for your kids and grandkids is always nice. But do you really need to purchase a bigger house just for that? After all, you are the one who is going to live in that house, not them. Therefore, you need to think about yourself and your needs.
The fact is larger houses come with some drawbacks. For example, the monthly costs are significantly higher, and the homes are harder to maintain. That's why we suggest choosing a smaller house that is enough just for you. In fact, downsizing is the number one rule of retiring. It's okay to buy a home with one extra bedroom, but it's also important to keep the balance.
With downsizing comes decluttering. Therefore, we recommend starting this process even before moving into your new home. We all have many items in our homes that we never use and that have been piling up for years. So, see which of these items you can donate or recycle. Also, if you want to declutter your home properly, get rid of all the junk you can't use anymore. This will make the whole downsizing process easier.
Another one of the house hunting tips for after you retire is looking for low-maintenance housing options. This implies two things. First, when house hunting, look for move-in-ready houses. You simply don't want nor need to deal with fixer-uppers. And second - choose a home that's easy to clean and keep organized. You don't need many rooms, hidden corners, too much storage space, or a large backyard. Keep it simple and easy to maintain on every level. Of course, you need to have enough storage for your stuff, and it's nice to purchase a house with a backyard. Just don't overdo it; you probably don't need anything extravagant.
Once you retire, your daily routine and needs will change. You won't have to commute to work every day, you won't go out as much, and busy and noisy streets will start to bother you. Therefore, when it comes to house hunting after you retire, think about location. For example, many retirees choose to purchase a house in their favorite vacation spot. However, you have to be careful. Not every vacation destination is ideal for everyday life. Maybe you have the best time when you come there for a 10-day vacation, but find out what it's like to live there off-season as well.
On the other hand, places like Florida are ideal for both vacation and retirement life. Many retirees will agree that there are more than enough reasons to retire in Florida. It's the perfect area to age in place.
Additionally, quiet suburban life is ideal for retirement. Therefore, we suggest choosing suburbs over downtown life. You also need to make sure you have everything you need near your house. The pharmacy and your doctor's office should be close to you. Also, having a grocery store and farmers' market in the neighborhood would be ideal. Make sure public transportation is available as well.
Studies show that today's retirement communities are much more active than earlier generations. As a result, many neighborhoods offer retiree-friendly activities that will help you lead a healthy, fulfilled, and active life in your retirement days. These types of communities usually feature activities such as hiking, swimming, cycling, tennis as well as golfing, and other outdoor activities. Additionally, many neighborhoods have a clubhouse and community center where you can take different courses (cooking, dancing, pottery, etc.). There are also various events and happenings organized by locals that retirees will definitely enjoy. So, if you want to have a quiet yet active retirement, look for these types of neighborhoods when house hunting.
The last one of the house hunting tips for after you retire is to work with an experienced real estate agent. Just like some agents are experts for luxury real estate, there are also those who know everything about buying a house after you retire. So, make sure you find yourself an agent that will help you make educated decisions along the way and purchase a home that is perfect for you as a retiree. This will definitely make the whole process smoother and easier for you. And let's be honest, you've had enough stress in your life.
With these informative house hunting tips for after you retire, we're sure you'll find a house that's perfect to age in place. Think simple, small, and accessible. Also, consider the location and everything it will provide you - doctor's office, pharmacy, friendly and active community, serenity, and beautiful surroundings. After all, you want to spend your golden years healthy and happy. So, make sure you surround yourself with things that allow all this!
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