- Determine how much space you need or want and plug in a monthly payment number. If you sell your present house and you can pay cash for your new home, great. If the choice is to put some of the money in investments or have as reserves, now is the time to make that decision.
- Based on your projected income, how much can you afford monthly for a house payment, utilities, and maintenance? Most 55+ communities will have an association monthly fee that will cover water, sewer, and all outside maintenance, but you will be responsible for all inside maintenance.
- Not all Boomers want to live in an age-restricted community. Some feel uncomfortable in an aging environment without age diversity but again they may want the security of like-minded and aged people. Not a subdivision but a community. This is an important question that needs to be addressed by both partners.
- Statistically women outlive men by a wide margin.
- Consider the physical location based on where your doctors, friends and family are.
- Consider getting rid of stuff you have collected for many years. What will fit in your new home?
- Do you want the ability to come and go as you please and not worry about being away from home for a few weeks?
Do We Rent?
- Renting covers a lot of ground. Age restricted apartments? A house that is a ranch style? A duplex or triplex? High end community where they offer services i.e. two meals a day and have activities scheduled for you to enjoy? Subsidized housing because you can’t afford anything else? Rent a remodeled apartment over one of your children’s garages? Lots of choices.
- Qualifiers: Does the rental (1) have a walk-in shower or tub cut for convenience and safety; 2. Limited steps that can be managed; 3. Meet your budget?
- Is the complex safe and managed well? Interview some of the renters to find out about present management and especially does management change frequently?
- Can you negotiate a lease renewably with rent raises spelled out so you can see what impact that has on your monthly budget?
Research: Please review web sites, www.trulia.com. They have a section that can show you for your area if renting or purchasing a home would be less expensive. Look under any web pages under Owning versus Renting a Home.
The good news is that whether buying a home or renting an apartment or house, you will be an asset because you’re going to stay there for a while and you’re financially predictable. Remind your lender and or owner of the home or apartment you want to rent or buy because you are money in the bank to them.