For some, retirement allows you to move anywhere you want without living close to an employer. Nearly 400,000 U.S. retirees changed residences in 2020, according to MReport. People have different reasons for deciding to relocate during retirement; finances, physical issues, and emotions drive some moves.
Here are tips on determining where to relocate in retirement.
Cater to Your Lifestyle Preferences
Retirement is an opportunity to enjoy activities you may not have had time to do when working. Look for activities that feature those activities you enjoy.
For example, if you enjoy golf, consider a golf community. If you want to meet other retirees and participate in organized activities for your age, consider relocating to a 55-plus community. If you like an urban lifestyle, look at cities where you can walk to the theater, museums, and shopping. Finally, if you want outdoor activities, consider those areas with favorable weather and an abundance of parks, trails, and streams.
Also, always consider whether the area has enough people your age so that you can make new friends easily.
Examine the Cost of Living
Areas with a lower cost of living can make your savings, Social Security, and pension income go further. A cost of living calculator can help you compare prospective metropolitan areas.
Part of the cost of living includes the area’s tax structure. Thirty-seven states don’t tax Social Security benefits. Nine states have no income tax at all.
Property taxes also vary widely among states and localities and can be a factor if you plan to buy a home. Some states may offer property tax discounts or tax forgiveness to seniors.
Consider States that Protect Assets After Death
Another consideration is the inheritance or estate taxes, especially if your estate is relatively large. The federal estate tax exemption threshold has increased so that most Americans have no worries about it. However, states can still tax assets after death for smaller estates. Thirty-three states, however, do not have an inheritance or state tax.
Research Proximity to Healthcare
As people age, unfortunately, their health deteriorates. So being close to good healthcare facilities becomes more critical, especially for people who have chronic conditions such as diabetes or heart disease. Do your research to see if you’ll have good access to doctors and hospitals.
Consider Access to Family
If family relationships are essential, consider access to family. For example, will you be able to visit your grandchildren regularly? Relocating solely to be close to grandchildren may not always be a good idea since their parents may be recruited for a job opportunity elsewhere.
Relocating close to a major airport might be a better strategy; access will be easy no matter where your grandchildren live. Living close to a major airport is also essential if traveling is a goal in retirement.
Don’t Automatically Choose a Favorite Vacation Spot
Choosing a beloved vacation spot for retirement is tempting. But, vacation spots sometimes have a much higher cost of living than other communities. Also, living in a community year-round is much different than vacationing there.
Test Your Choices
Do some trial runs once you think you’ve found the right community. Then, rent there for several weeks at different times of the year to see what you’ll experience as a permanent resident before you commit.
Are You Ready to Make the Move?
If retirement is right around the corner and you are planning to move, you might need some help with the relocation. Contact us for a free quote. We can get you to your retirement spot quickly and hassle-free so you can start enjoying the next chapter of your life.