How Seniors Can Buy & Move Into A New Home - by Guest Author Jim Vogel
It happens to many people as they get older. That giant house was perfect for a young family, but it doesn’t fit with your senior lifestyle. Maybe it’s too cold or a problem to keep clean. Then again, maybe it’s just the memories or the changes in the surrounding area that are the problem. Regardless of why, many seniors are moving into new homes.
Many older people can benefit from downsizing and getting into a new place. It may not be as easy as a young couple, but moving to a new home can be done right. Seniors just have to look into why they are moving, what financing options are available to them, and how to pack those valuable family heirlooms so they survive the move.
Why Seniors Can Need A New Place
There are many reasons why seniors might need to move into a new home:
Maintaining that old house is becoming too much to handle;
Mowing the yard and shoveling the snow can be a health risk;
Stairs are getting harder to safely navigate;
In some cases, the house might be too expensive under a retirement income (either the mortgage payments or association fees).
What might be the biggest reason is called downsizing. This is when you purposefully buy a house much smaller than your current one. There are many reasons why this makes sense, such as having too many rooms to keep clean or too much of a house to maintain. When you’re raising a family, you need a lot of space. Now that your kids are grown and have started their own families, do you really need three bedrooms for just the two of you?
Financing the Big Move
Of course, moving away from the old home can be tough. But sticking with a sentimental attachment to your old home is one of the biggest housing mistakes that seniors make. That’s because you can have way more house than you need, and you end up either paying too much monthly or keeping too much money tied up in real estate.
Can seniors afford to buy a new house at that age? Definitely. In fact, there are several home financing options that are great for seniors. A home equity conversion mortgage, for example, is great if you aren’t selling your house but buying a new one, but standard home loans can still work. And if your old home sells well, you could outright buy the new one and even have some cash to spare.
Talk to your realtor if you need to consider special programs to help you secure a home loan.
There are a lot of options out there for seniors, the disabled and veterans. Exhaust your resources so that you can get the most for your money.
Taking Care Of Family Heirlooms
As the eldest of the family, many seniors have the responsibility of holding onto family heirlooms. Whether it’s an old war medal or a large grandfather clock, these things mean a lot to the whole family. That’s why special care must be taken when moving them.
First, go with an accredited moving company. They have the training, experience, and equipment to properly take care of those heirlooms. You can always take small items with you as you drive from your old home to your new one, but for larger heirlooms, you need professionals.
And if something is very valuable, take pictures of it before the movers get to take over. You can also oversee its packing. After all, you’re the one paying for their services.
Moving Can Be Great For Seniors
There are many great reasons for seniors to move into a new house during their golden years. By knowing why you want to move, looking into your financial options, and hiring movers to transport your belongings safely, you can help make sure that your move is a successful one.
Jim Vogel, co-founder of ElderAction, is passionate about promoting senior health and safety. He focuses on helping ensure seniors are able to thrive throughout their golden years by sharing pertinent resources and information.
Thank you Jim!