Article written by: Hazel Bridges
Seniors often find it necessary to purchase a new home as they hit their older years, and there are a lot of things to take into consideration with a move like this. There are numerous financing aspects to consider and many wonder where to find assistance to ensure that this type of transition goes smoothly. What do older adults need to know when they are considering buying a new place in their later years?
Seniors have a lot to consider when deciding to purchase a new home
The reasons that seniors look to buy a home in their later years vary from situation to situation, and the reasons for the move will generate some specifics to consider. Some people want to move into a smaller home or one that is easier to manage in their older years while others may want to move to a warmer climate or a new community where family members live.
U.S. News & World Report Money suggests that seniors consider their lifestyle, both in the present day and what they anticipate in the years ahead, before committing to a new home. Single-level living, being in a community of solely older adults, or having space for family to stay over are all details that may impact what type of home to purchase. There are many different types of properties that work well for older adults, from single family homes to townhomes, condominiums, retirement communities and places where some assistance is incorporated or medical facilities are nearby.
Carefully consider the long-term possibilities and overall costs of a new place
Purchasing a home as a senior brings up a number of financial considerations. Some experts recommend spending less on a home than one may be able to afford at the time of the purchase to allow for changes in the future that may lower one’s monthly income. Consulting a financial adviser may be a wise step at this point, as seniors should consider how much to invest as a down payment in a new home versus investing the money via other methods, notes Kiplinger. How long one expects to be in the home can make a difference in choosing how much to spend as well.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau points out that it is important to look at the whole picture when considering a home purchase as a senior. There is not only the cost of the home involved, but taxes, insurance, utilities, and maintenance as well and the process can get expensive, especially if one does not plan to stay in the home for long. However, there can be significant tax advantages to owning a home versus renting, and this is where a tax adviser or financial consultant can become a valuable asset.
There are a variety of financing options available when buying a new home
When it comes to being a senior and buying a home, there are numerous ways to proceed. Some people are able to buy a new place with cash or with a large down payment thanks to equity from another home sale, while others will need to finance a traditional mortgage. This can be a challenge for some who may be retired and have little income or assets, but there often is assistance available. It can be helpful to consult with an adviser or check into some of the programs available in one’s local community or via the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to ensure that no prime opportunities have been missed.
Anytime someone is considering buying a home it is a big decision, but doing so as a senior adds some additional layers of complexity. Unfortunately, there are some people who aim to take advantage of seniors with financing deals that may seem too good to be true, so it is important for older adults to consult with experts to ensure that they are headed down the best possible path.