When your relatives reach retirement age, it can be the ideal time to think about the future, especially when it comes to their residential options. In a lot of cases, it’s possible to find a solution that will make life easier for them and allow them to access funds to fully enjoy their retirement. Sometimes it isn’t an easy conversation to have, but by offering your loved one the right level of support, you can help them get the most out of their golden years.
To help you out, we’ve rounded-up four of the best options for retirement living that will still allow your older relative to enjoy life to the full. Read on to find out more.
Downsizing to a smaller home
A family-sized home is the perfect place to raise children. But later, when the kids have flown the nest, it can make practical and financial sense to downsize. If your loved one is still living in a large house that they own, it might be worth looking into how they could move to a more manageable property. Not only will this allow them to unlock the equity they’ve built up over the years, but a more compact home can be easier to get around and maintain, as well as being cheaper to run.
However, before you go ahead and recommend this option to your loved one, it’s important to sit down with them and make sure that it makes financial sense. Moving to a new house can cost a lot of money in fees, duties, and removal costs, and if your relative wants to relocate to a different area, there may be a disparity in property prices with their old neighbourhood. However, you can use a too like MoneySuperMarket’s moving cost calculator to get a better sense of what the total will be and whether the move is feasible.
If your loved one has always said they’d like to live in another country or they regularly take holidays to the same region, it might be worth suggesting they move there on a permanent basis or for part of the year. Even though there has been turbulence in recent years thanks to the Euro crisis and Brexit, moving to the continent is still an achievable goal, though you may want to keep up with the news around both of these issues to help you stay informed.
Should your loved one wish to go ahead with the move, you’ll need to make sure that they’re on top of their paperwork and that they know what they need to do to emigrate. The government offers plenty of guidance on tax and pensions when moving abroad, so take the time to read up on these so you can lend a helping hand.
Buying a park home
An alternative to moving into another bricks and mortar property is to buy a park home on one of the UK’s many residential parks. A park home is a bungalow-style home that is pre-built and then moved to a private site, usually outside of busy towns and cities. Many of these parks are for retirees-only and offer a thriving social scene, with lots of activities to get involved in.
Typically, a park home costs a lot less to buy than a regular property, and they’re also much cheaper and easier to run and maintain than a house or flat. This makes them a good option if your loved one wants a smaller home that won’t eat into their retirement fund. They also make a good base for those who want to spend half of the year living abroad.
So, if your relative is looking to enjoy a quiet life in the country and wants to become part of a like-minded community, then an investment in a park home could be the right move for them. However, the purchase process for one of these homes is not the same as a traditional property, so be sure to take a look at GoldShield’s guide to buying a park home to get up to speed.
Moving to a retirement village
Does your older relative still want to retain their independence but needs a helping hand every now and again? Then moving to a retirement village might be the best option for them. There is usually a great sense of community among the residents, with plenty of activities, crafts, and social events to get involved with, making them ideal for someone who likes to get involved and stay busy.
These communities also have comfortable residences that are very manageable for someone who may have mobility or health problems, as well as support staff, alarms, and easy access buildings. They even provide essential amenities like housekeeping and home visit hairdressers to make life a bit easier for those in their later years. Having said that, your loved one can still live as independently as they like in a retirement village, so they can benefit from the best of both worlds.
So, if you have a relative that you think may benefit from downsizing or moving elsewhere, don’t be afraid to have a conversation about their options. Once they’re enjoying the perks of their new lifestyle, they’ll be sure to thank you later.