Baby boomers are the largest seniors’ generation of all time and most of them are aging homeowners. Called the great grey tsunami, they represent enormous buying power and commercial clout. This is the demographic that should make people like sellers, buyers and real estate professionals pay attention.
Are you aging? Let’s take a look at some of the facts that matter in your life.
I’m still young
Right, so you’re in your 30s or 40s with a mind that’s thinking getting old is a long, long way away. You’re a dot-com millionaire and you can buy anywhere but did you consider you may be buying in a flagging neighborhood. Alternatively, your house is so big you may have to pay someone to take it off your hands when you get old and alone. Now that’s not growing old with your dream home.
When buying a home, have you reflected that you will most likely be considered old when you have paid it off? If you never thought about old age or growing old with the home you are about to buy, then here are some useful pointers to plan around.
Planning is wisdom
Buy a flexible house to fit you for life.
Easier said than done, but that is exactly what is meant, because your house can shrink or grow if you buy right in the first place. And that is the secret to your old age and successful choices
Buy a house that is big enough for your family now, with the view to shrinking it in the future and for that you will need the following.
Making the shoe fit
Finding an expandable house is an art in itself, where you are going to have to use your imagination. The secret is to buy a house that you can cut to fit your needs, both now and later.
This requires all your resourcefulness to plan and scheme while you look. Usually, the best plans can be accomplished by buying a house that has a natural place to separate one part from the other.
While you have children, use the whole house and when the children leave home, separate the area they lived in and turn it into a flat or an income boosting rental property.
One couple raised their children in a double-story home. When the children left, they took away the upstairs, moved downstairs and had a new roof constructed for their now single-story love home.
Now, some fixtures can make life safer and easier for the aging homeowner. With future alterations it’s worth looking into; no-skid bathroom tiles, hand railings for bath and shower, lever handles on doors, less stairs or easy height steps with hand rails.
Look for an appropriate neighborhood. When you’re old, you’ll wish you never had to drive anywhere, never mind everywhere. Ask around and you will find most older people do not like to drive in city traffic. For that reason, pick a home that will be close to public transit or walking distance from most conveniences.
Always keep in mind that what you need in a home for your old age will be very much the same as for all older people. This fact makes your home a valuable asset for resale if you decide to go to live in the country.
Most neighborhoods that are made with pedestrians in mind will suit the mobile elderly. All you need now is a place close to general stores and eateries and also keep in mind medical needs like the pharmacy and doctor.
The social life
When you’re young, you probably never thought of old people needing to socialize. When it comes to your house hunting needs, this is exactly what you need to bear in mind, while you look for your perfect, wisely chosen home.
Insider knowledge, that’s the thing. Parks, libraries, theaters, museums and somewhere to worship may not be high on your agenda now but it will be when you are old. Obviously community centers will be very useful, especially if they have an indoor heated pool, games, gym and a social club.
There is great wisdom in buying to suit your old age and someone who has proven that is Warren Buffet who, with all his money, still lives in the same house he bought in his twenties.