I spend a lot of time visualizing my retirement. My parents are both approaching 80 years of age and there is no doubt that the decisions that they have made are influencing my current and future plans. They have done well: compromises have been made, investments and budgets are managed, and health concerns are attended to. They enjoyed many years of a vacation lake home before they sold it, and now they also enjoy traveling.
So where does that leave me?
We are leaning more and more towards downsizing and moving at retirement. Communities that cater to the 55+ crowd tend to have lower home prices. I am a bit obsessed with the online realtor sites as I watch houses in one particular community coming and leaving the market. Oh, we are not moving yet. Neither my husband nor I are yet 55 (though close) and we still have one child in high school.
But I see the day. Our home is large – it fits our family of eight beautifully. One day we really will be empty nesters and the equity in this home should be nearly enough to cover the cost of a smaller home sitting on a golf course in a beautiful retirement community. It would mean leaving a city that we love, a community that we have been actively a part of for nearly 30 years, and friends that we hold dear.
Living in Silicon Valley means that our housing costs are high. As I am getting older, I know more and more retirees packing up and leaving the area. Cashing out on home values here is allowing them more financial freedom to live the life they want somewhere else. I admit seeing myself move has been a transformation. I am not 100% sure that it will happen, but I see many, many benefits. So in the meantime, I watch the housing market and visualize our life in a different community.
Does selling your family home and downsizing fit in your retirement plans? What about proximity to children and grandchildren? Our adult children are scattered, but not yet settled. There are so many factors to consider in planning our retirement!
I think this is a great question and one people don’t often consider when they are attached to their homes. Its probably best to move if you don’t need all of the space and it can be hard to keep up as well. I like your outlook and its definitely something I would consider.