Retirement heralds a time of transformation for most people. Choosing the best retirement location for your lifestyle gives you a chance to redefine your living environment to match your aspirations and live the life you truly desire.
If you’re nearing retirement, or have already retired, you may be planning on staying put in your home and familiar community. However, it’s worth considering what your life will look like in 10 or 20 years to make sure your current home will work for you through retirement.
You could stay in the same city but find a single-level home or move into a 55+ community, if available, to take advantage of the amenities and built-in social opportunities. Otherwise, if you don’t have everything you want and need in your current location, it might be worth considering the advantages of exploring other locations.
Keeping expenses and taxes as low as possible may be a top priority for those who have limited retirement funds. Whereas those with medical issues will want to be close to the best medical facilities and physicians. Another important consideration for many retirees is living closer to their kids and grandkids to be more involved in their lives.
Some of the big location considerations for most people when choosing a retirement location:
It’s worth making a list of location considerations and scoring each item by importance in making the decision of where to retire.
Living close to family in retirement has immeasurable benefits. Creating cherished memories through shared holidays, the joy of impromptu visits, and the support network that only relatives can provide. Residing near your children and grandchildren allows you to be an integral part of their lives and participate in important milestones, regular activities and spontaneous gatherings. This closeness also provides mutual support as you’re available to lend a hand when needed, and they’re nearby to assist you as you navigate your golden years.
If you’ve been dreaming about your favorite vacation destination as the ideal place to retire, you might find that you don’t enjoy living there full-time. Tourist destinations and areas with high-demand amenities often come with a higher cost of living, which can stretch retirement budgets. They are also generally more expensive in terms of healthcare, housing, dining and entertainment.
For most people, the affordability of a chosen retirement destination is paramount. This not only includes housing costs but also the price of daily essentials, entertainment and healthcare services. Property and income tax can also take a significant bite out of your retirement savings.
Consider locations with no state income tax, lower property taxes or exemptions for seniors, which can provide significant savings. Some states offer favorable tax policies for retirees, including exemptions on Social Security benefits, pensions and other retirement income. Investigating tax implications in your desired retirement location can be as important as choosing a location with the right climate.
As healthcare needs typically increase with age, proximity to quality medical facilities becomes a critical factor. Researching areas with renowned hospitals, specialists, and senior-friendly health services will ensure you have access to the best care without the need to travel extensively.
Don’t forget to include in your search dental, eye care, physical therapy, and other health services that you might require regularly.
Climate plays a substantial role in everyday comfort and well-being. Some retirees dream of warm, sunny climates, while others prefer four distinct seasons or a cooler environment. Your climate preference should align with your health needs and lifestyle aspirations, whether that means year-round golfing conditions or hitting the slopes come winter.
Amenities such as parks, beaches, shopping, restaurants, golfing, cultural events, senior classes or whatever your main interests are, can add richness to your life. According to the National Council on Aging, “Older adults who participate in senior center programs experience better psychological well-being across several measures compared to non-participants…”. Moreover, living in a community where these amenities are within easy reach can minimize the need for long drives and increase your independence as you age.
The safety of your chosen locale impacts peace of mind, while air quality and other environmental factors can affect health, particularly for those with respiratory and other health issues. Researching crime rates and environmental data can help you find a location where you can feel secure and breathe easy.
For some, moving to a 55+ community might check all the boxes. These planned environments cater to retirees looking for a mix of social interaction, recreation, and convenience. They often provide resort-style amenities, single-level homes made for aging in place and a community of like-minded peers to share this new phase of life.
Selecting a retirement destination is a personal journey that should be navigated with a detailed map of your priorities and preferences. From the desire to be near grandchildren to the practicality of affordable living and healthcare access, each factor plays a pivotal role in scripting your retirement story. Climate preferences, safety considerations and the inclination for local amenities will further color your decision. With thoughtful consideration, your retirement location can serve as the backdrop for a vibrant and fulfilling chapter of life.
When choosing the best retirement location for your lifestyle, don’t overlook the importance of community when buying a new home.
If the convenience and security of living in a 55+ community is appealing to you, explore Epcon Communities in locations around the country. We build communities designed to bring people together with amenities and activities that provide a variety of options for the active adult lifestyle.
We offer single-level homes from 1,300 to over 3,000 square feet with 2-4 bedrooms and many of our communities include resort-style amenities. Our homes can include features 55+ home buyers love that make their lives easier, safer and more enjoyable.
Many of our communities include landscape maintenance and snow removal through the HOA which frees up time for you to enjoy the activities and people that make your life more complete. It’s part of how Epcon Communities helps you make time for what matters most.
Contact us to learn more about our low-maintenance lifestyle which gives you more time to spend enjoying special moments with your family and friends and additional benefits available to our home buyers.