Choosing a Retirement Community
About 40% of American retirees downsize or move after retirement. Some retirees opt to relocate to a new community and others decide to age in place. Below are things to consider when choosing a home for retirement and resources to help make the best choice.
Alternatives – consider changing lifestyle, downsizing to a condominium, or living with family.
Benefits - moving provides opportunities for improving health, lifestyle, and happiness.
Communities - choices include active adult, assisted living, life plan (also known as continuing care retirement), and lifestyle communities (e.g., beach and golf communities).
Cost - consider financial and psychological expenses of moving; rent before buying to reduce risks.
Dwelling - varieties include apartments, cabins, condominiums, garden homes, mobile homes, and townhomes.
Family - explore alternatives with family members to achieve consensus.
Health - plan for the go-go years, the slow-go years, and the no-go years.
Purpose - rank selection factors for things most important to you.
Rachel Hartman, Where-to Woes of Retirement: The Pros and Cons of Retirement Housing Options, U.S. News & World Report, Feb. 6, 2019.
Staff, Buying a Home After Retirement, Chase.com, Aug. 6, 2023.
Staff, How Continuing Care Retirement Communities Work, AARP.
Staff, What is a Lifestyle Community, PCR Lifestyle Blog, Aug. 6, 2023.
Lawrence Folik and Sally Balch Hurme, Wise Moves: Checklist for Where to Live, What to Consider, and Whether to Stay or Go, ABA Book Publishing, Feb. 21, 2020.
Sally Balch Hurme, Get the Most out of Retirement: Checklist for Happiness, Health, Purpose, and Financial Security, ABA Book Publishing, Dec. 1. 2016.
Wade Pfau, Retirement Planning Guidebook, 2nd Ed., Retirement Researcher Media, March 15, 2023.