Image via Pixabay

A Quick Guide to Retirement and Affordable Living

Retirement is your reward for a life of service, and usually a cause for celebration. Yet not being in the working world anymore means you have to keep your living expenses affordable so your retirement income can cover your costs. Where you live is one of the most costly expenses in your budget, so here’s a quick and easy guide on keeping your living arrangements affordable -- and your retirement comfortable.


Paying For It All: Saving Money In Retirement

Whether you choose to age in place or you decide moving to a retirement community is your best bet, you’re going to have to find ways to afford everything. U.S.News points out proper money management, including cost-effective living arrangements, is an important step in the right direction, but you also need the funds available to do so. That’s why it’s recommended to do some serious financial planning well before you retire.


If you have questions about what types of retirement savings plans are best, now is the best time to get them answered. Meeting with a financial advisor can help put you on the right path. Are you more of a DIY finance type? Putting your financial details into an online retirement calculator is often eye-opening. Whichever way you choose, taking the time to chart out your path to retirement will help you reap the rewards of careful planning in the future. 

Evaluate Your Hidden Costs

If you’ve got your own home, you may think your retirement living arrangements are covered. Yet in many ways, the hidden costs of owning a home can make this an ongoing and expensive proposition, especially with things like property taxes, utilities, and regular maintenance. Other emergency costs, such as replacing broken appliances or repairing a damaged roof, can hike these costs up even further. RISMedia notes downsizing to a more modest house is one option, but even selling your current home and moving into a smaller, less expensive one doesn’t change the fact that you’ll still be paying for maintenance and upkeep. To assess how much of your income can go toward your housing, run some quick calculations.  


Finally, the allure of aging in place can be further tarnished when it comes to accessibility. Unless you already live in a one-story ranch with senior-friendly design elements, like easy-access bathrooms, extensive renovations could be in order. Additionally, if you have personal care needs, or you require regular medical care, you’ll have to contract a home health aide at an additional cost. 


Retirement Communities May Be the Most Economical

In your search for a new home for your retirement years, don’t discount a retirement community. Not only do these types of living arrangements come in a wide variety that can match your needs, but the costs of moving to a retirement community can also, overall, be much lower than living at home. 


First, all the homes in a senior living complex, whether they’re condos, apartments, or modestly-sized houses, are all designed with accessibility in mind. This means you don’t have to pay out of pocket for costly renovations. Next, the monthly cost of living in a retirement community is all-inclusive of maintenance, repairs, and upkeep; the price you pay per month is usually one flat fee. This makes it much easier to budget your retirement income


One of the biggest ways that retirement communities can be a cost-effective option is how they can accommodate any personal care or medical needs. When it’s all said and done, living in an assisted living community, or one that offers continuous care that adapts to your needs, as you age often costs less than it would to live at home and hire a home health aide or similar service.


Don’t let your retirement be a source of sleepless nights. Making smart choices now when it comes to your living arrangements can lead to a more secure financial future, one where you can live out your retirement years in comfort knowing that you’re safe and secure.

Planning on selling your home or downsizing into a new one? Partner with dedicated real estate professional Debbi Rivero today! 443.386.1306


Blog provided by: Harry Cline