Age in Place

Studies have shown that most people will age in place.  And that was even before the financial crisis, which probably will defer people from moving now and for the foreseeable future.  But aging in place is now bad. in fact, if you retire in your current home, you may find many advantages.

If you stay in your current home, you won’t have to buy a new one, nor to sell the current one.  Buying and selling real estate is always an expensive transaction and now in this uncertain time with real estate taken a major blow, it could be risky.   Also when you consider moving expenses and expenses setting up another house, you could be saving substantial money staying where you are.  However you may think about making your home more livable.  There are things that make a home more livable, that is more comfortable, easier and safer for independent living and will fun  doing.

When you retire in your current home, you may find new ways to enjoy it.  For example you may try a square foot garden which will get you outside more and you can enjoy the home grown vegetables that taste so much better.  You may landscape your yard, grow new plants and try something different.   Barbecuing is a fun thing to do the in back yard and many people start grilling out just about every day.  Building a fire pit or retaining wall, deck or gazebo are other projects.

Since you are not moving to a active adult community with all their social activities they brag about, join meetup.com and try out several groups of interest close by in your area.  I have done this and am a member of two meetup groups that I look forward to attending.  You meet new friends this way also.  Your local YMCA or health club can offer anything and more than the active adult communities.  Your local park has walking trails and green ways and green spaces which are the best deal to get you outside.  Many people walk in the neighborhood.

Aging in place will allow you to continue meeting your friends for lunch, shopping trips and to see movies (does anyone still do that?).  And staying close to relatives. Being in a familiar area where you know where everything is certainly has it’s benefits.

Retiring probably has more to do with what you do than where you do it.  There is nothing magical about moving to a far off location.  In fact that could be disruptive and take away the time you gained by retiring in the first place.  There are more advantages to aging in place which I am sure I will think of as soon as I press “Publish” but you get the idea.

Age in Community

Rather than aging in place, the boomer (me & you) could sell our large suburban home and move to a smaller, maybe more efficient livable home nearby.  I doubt we could make any money from our equity swap if we are paying cash for the new retirement home, but at least we would be in position to enjoy life without the larger property taxes, insurance and property maintenance expenses.
We would still meet with our friends and associates since we would be nearby.  We could still frequent the restaurants, stores and other places where we shop and live day to day.  Maybe the new place would be in a 55+ community so we could meet some new friends who would be happy to also meet us.  We are not relocating and starting all over, just making a life change for the better.  The new community could be a little further out or nearby.  Most of the active adult communities seem to be a littler further out on the edge of metro areas, but close enough to keep in contact with friends and relatives.  But more and more I see 55+ communities nearby in the suburbs, not the large communities but maybe large enough.  Later if we want to get a second home in the mountains or at the beach where we could spend some time, that is an option.  Actually I think renting the second home or vacation home is the best option for many of us.  What do you think?