Home buying for seniors, and considerations for finding just the right fit, requires a different thought process. There is a lot to consider with retirement and downsizing.
“At 11, I could say ‘I am sodium’ (Element 11) and now, at 79, I am gold.” — Oliver Sacks
There are multiple aspects to consider when a senior looks at home buying in their older years. Priorities will likely be very different compared to what was ideal years ago. Navigating the process can seem challenging, but there are some ways to make it a bit easier. For years we have been assisting our clients in these big decisions. Now, as a Seniors Real Estate Specialist , I am glad that our team can offer this added value to our clients as they consider home buying and finding just the right fit.
Create a Priority List
A senior should create a specific priority checklist before starting the search for a new home. Community, health and safety are important. Home buying considerations for many older adults will include one-level living as stairs can become challenging. Don’t forget to look at the kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom closely to ensure they will be easily accessible.
Seniors are often downsizing to a smaller place at this stage of life. There are many types of living spaces to consider. If the new home will be in a retirement community or assisted living facility, consider the community amenities. Perhaps you are, instead, considering updating your current home for aging in place. It is important to think ahead and consider the individual unit, the community spaces, and think about what may be needed in the years to come (not just right now).
Consider Budget and Options for Accessing Equity
Prior to buying a new home, a buyer will need to consider what they can afford. Many seniors are on a limited budget, and it is vital they keep enough money accessible to live comfortably day-to-day. Not only do they need to account for monthly expenses, but they should also build a reserve for emergency repairs or future health issues.
Some seniors decide to make a large down payment on their home, perhaps using equity from the sale of their previous home. As the FDIC explains, there are ways older adults can utilize equity in their new home in order to have access to cash. Some do a reverse mortgage, called a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage, while others get a home equity line-of-credit or second mortgage. Because there are so many financing options, our team can offer you an extensive list of trusted resources to answer all of your financing questions.
What to do with our current home
When considering a home purchase and move, there is always a question of timing and what to do with a current home. When you are considering a home purchase, a home sale can seem overwhelming when the time comes. Coordinating selling your home is more than just a timing consideration. It can be years of emotion to sort through. Our job is to help Seniors, and all of our clients, sort through the “to do” list. We help answer the questions of what to do when preparing to sell your house and organize the priority. Stress reducing!
Focus on Reputable Resources When Considering a Move
The Tam Team is excited to add a long list of Senior Advisers to our team as trusted sources. We work through our local communities and chambers building relationships that we can pass on to our clients. Please reach out to us for your particular need, when considering Home Buying for Seniors. We can certainly suggest, residential move coordinator and organizer, The Betty Brigade (be sure to get reach out with our free Tam Team $100 consultation). From Elder Law Attorney to facility options and more, we work hard to be a trusted resource for our clients.