Buying a home in your 20s was an exciting time. Who cared that the upstairs needed rewiring and the porch was on a slight tilt? You were a homeowner!
But as you reach retirement and start looking to buy a house for your new lifestyle, the process is obviously different. When it comes to buying a home at 65 versus buying one in your 20s, you’ll be taking a whole new list of concerns into account before you make your decision.
6 Features to Look for as a Senior Homebuyer:
We all know this is an important real estate principle. But as a senior homebuyer, you’re going to be looking at different things than you were in your 20s. When you were just starting out in your first house, you focused on the school districts, the proximity to your favorite restaurants and shops, or maybe even how trendy the neighborhood was.
When buying a home in your 60s, you’ll likely have a new set of concerns like proximity to family, ease of access to activities and services, and and the availability of quality medical care. You want to live in a place that facilitates your active retirement lifestyle.
Easy access to a wide variety of events and activities, maintenance services, and medical care are some of the many benefits of living in retirement communities. By having all of those things on one campus, retirement communities deliver a convenient and enriching senior living experience.
What do you think when you hear “retirement community”? If you think about stuffy residents and dusty old facilities, you’re probably stuck on at least one of the top 5 myths about retirement communities. Senior living communities aren’t where people go to convalesce. They’re where people go to meet new people, explore new interests, and live carefree retirement lifestyles.
#2 Maintenance Concerns
When you’re buying a home after 65, you really want to pay close attention to how much maintenance and upkeep a property is going to need. When you were a 20-year-old homebuyer, a 3-acre yard might have seemed like a fun challenge. Now, it’s just a major hassle to arrange quality, reliable lawncare services.
If you’re moving into a new house with a large yard and a lot of landscaping, you’ll definitely want to plan for a lawn care service. You might enjoy doing some of the work yourself, but it’ll make your life a lot easier to have a professional taking care of leftover tasks.
If you’re considering moving into senior living community like a cooperative retirement community, maintenance services are a huge perk. You don’t have to worry about doing it yourself or hiring reliable help. It will all be taken care of for you as part of your monthly fees. Depending on the community, there might even be interior maintenance available for your apartment or cottage.
This is also why retirement communities are great places to look if you’re thinking about buying a summer or winter home. With maintenance of the property all lined up for you, you don’t have to worry about hiring upkeep services while you’re away.
#3 Home Layout
In your 20s, you might not have been paying much attention to the layout of your house in terms of long-term convenience. But as you enter retirement, think about what’s going to be convenient both now and when you’re in your 80s.
As you look at retirement homes, keep the principles of senior safety and senior care in mind. Single level living is ideal, because let’s face it, even if you can handle the steps in your 90s, do you really want to make that climb every time you need something from the bedroom?
Along those same lines, make sure the doorways are wide enough for easy movement just in case you, one day, need to navigate them with a wheelchair or walker. You might never need to worry about that, but it’s better to be prepared.
As a senior homebuyer, it might be time to consider downsizing. By getting rid of things you no longer use and clearing out the clutter, you have the freedom to move to a more conveniently-sized property that better fits your needs.
This may seem like a minor consideration but it’s very important to make sure you can use the bathroom in your new retirement home well into the future. A large tub may seem like a great idea now, but 20 years down the road, you might need to replace it with a step-in shower.
As a senior homebuyer, you’re likely in a better place financially than you were as a 20-something who was just starting out on his or her own. You’re able to afford a quality house that exactly suits your needs without straining your budget.
However, when buying a house in retirement, people often forget to take into account things like maintenance and improvement costs when planning their financial future. They plan for the cost of the new retirement home and the move, but are often left in the lurch when expensive improvement or repair projects pop up years down the road.
To avoid this, make sure you budget for unexpected expenses associated with a new house. Or, you could take advantage of the financial security of a senior retirement cooperative, or senior co-op.
There are a lot of financial benefits of a senior co-op, but one of the main ones is that home repairs and maintenance are taken care of for you. You can expect stable monthly fees, making it easy to determine long term costs.
Co-op Living: Homeownership Without the Hassle
When buying a house in your 60s, a private cottage or apartment at retirement community is a great, no-hassle option. With included maintenance services, easily accessible amenities, and included services, you have all the joys of homeownership without any of the headaches. At Sugar Hill, we’ll even take care of paying your bills so you don’t have to worry about it.
Experience the Sugar Hill Retirement Community lifestyle by calling (603) 569-8485 or scheduling a tour online.