Ahhhhh retirement. When you stop living at work and start working at living.
Heading into retirement is a wonderful milestone. Time to relax, take seven day weekends, and finally enjoy the fruits of your labor… such as your home. But wait! Not so fast!
Whether it is downsizing, relocating, or renovating, most people who enter retirement make some sort of real estate decision. And why not? Real estate is a huge asset for retirees! However, homes can also hold a lot of emotional attachment, which can make it very easy for mistakes to happen.
You don’t have to let this happen to you. Below are the five most common real estate blunders that plague retirees. Read up to ensure that these don’t happen to you or a loved one.
Waiting Too Late to Downsize
The longer you wait to downsize, the more savings you’re missing out on. That’s money that could be used to invest, as we will explain in the next paragraph. More home than you need means more lawn to mow, more taxes, and more money on energy bills. Our advice is not to wait until retirement to downsize, but as soon as the space is no longer needed.
Not Investing the Proceeds
If you are able to purchase a home and collect cash at the same time, it’s imperative that you invest those proceeds. Don’t look at it as extra cash, or you might find yourself spending it too quickly. Instead consider your individual circumstances. In some situations it’s best to live on the home equity money first and leave retirement funds time to grow. All of this comes with certain tax implications that you will want to look into.
Not Researching Before Relocating
If you have dreams of relocating to a warmer location, make sure you do research beforehand. Look into how your taxes will be affected and the cost of living in the new area. Also be mindful of what your health care options are.
Recently Aiken, SC was named a top retirement destination by Where to Retire magazine.
“Beloved for its mild weather, Aiken also draws retirees who have a passion for horses and courses,” says Where to Retire Editor, Annette Fuller.
There is plenty for retirees to do in Aiken including golf at the Augusta National. In addition there is a new performing arts center, a historic downtown area filled with shops and restaurants, and continuing education courses offered by the USC-Aiken.
The city of Aiken is also great for retirees because it offers quality healthcare facilities at Aiken hospital, a growing economy, and a low cost of living.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beazley, REALTORS® has new homes for sale in The Retreat at Storm Branch, just 12 miles from Aiken. This neighborhood is not only beautiful but peaceful. The spacious lots offer privacy from neighbors as well as an ample supply of surrounding nature. It is the perfect location to relax and get away from it all.
Maintaining Two Homes
Maintaining two homes will not only drain your energy; it will drain your bank account. If you’re buying now to live in later, you might not be saving that much money after you factor in the costs of maintaining two homes anyways. If you are a snowbird, consider two small homes with manageable maintenance costs.
Having a Mortgage in Retirement
Not having a mortgage payment keeps expenses at a minimum, and could allow a retiree to delay taking Social Security distributions early. Waiting until full retirement age means your Social Security distributions will be larger too.
For more information about our available homes at The Retreat at Storm Branch, call Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Beazley, REALTORS® at 706-863-1775 or email us here.