Aging in Place: How to Tell If Your Atlanta Home Will Do in Retirement

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I recently discussed 7 Things to Consider When Choosing a Retirement Home in a previous blog post, and since have worked with several families. including my own, where the retired person feels that the best place to be happens to be their current home. And so the question is always, will this home suit me/us as I/we age? Here are a few tips:

Can I afford this home long-term?
Before you can accurately decide if you can stay put in your current Atlanta home, you will want to think long-term about your monthly costs. Account for property taxes, insurance, HOA fees, utilities— all the things that will be due whether or not you have a mortgage on the property.

Can I live independently in this home long-term?
These are tough questions to answer now, but assessing the current flow, floor plan, and furniture position will help. This, in addition to taking a good, hard look at your current health, and your long-term care plan. In addition, can this home be equipped with emergency health systems?

Can I handle the maintenance of this home?
One perk retirees have when moving to a new home is cutting the maintenance tasks like mowing the lawn, raking leaves, and cleaning the gutters. Ask yourself if you foresee being able to tackle the typical maintenance tasks associated with the home, especially as your physical abilities decline.

Will security be a problem?
Do you have great neighbors or family nearby that can help you look out not only for yourself, but for your home? If so, staying put may be the best option! Many retirees opt for living in a new home with security systems, resident-only access, or a gate, but living near trusted friends and family can be just as ideal!

Will this home’s layout be a problem?
As you age, perhaps stairs won’t be favorable, or your home’s layout won’t be able to accommodate a wheelchair or walker. Your health and mobility may be great right now, but it never hurts to think ahead to the future and if your home’s layout would become an issue.

Is this a neighborhood/area I can see my lifestyle flourishing in?
Before you can accurately decide if you can stay put in your current Atlanta home, you will also want to think about your life outside your home. Does the area offer enough options for what you enjoy spending your time doing, without requiring long commutes? Do you have friends that live close by that you can catch a movie with, or take a bike ride with? These are just a few things to think about.

Could the location be better?
There’s a reason the phrase “location, location, location” exists in real estate. Ask yourself if your current home is near to where you’ll be spending your time in retirement. Is it close to your children or grandchildren? Close to great restaurants or the golf course? This is such a tough call in the Atlanta market right now. So many of my retirees—many of them younger and younger—want to be close to family (kids, grandkids) but also want to have a life, and sometimes the two just don’t jive. It is a very personal decision, one that might include your family (or not).

Just know that I am a resource for you during your retirement planning, and can reassess your current situation to see if it makes sense to stay put in retirement, or to start anew. Jill@heineckandcompany.com is just a click away!

Jill Heineck
Associate Broker
Heineck & Company at Keller Williams Realty
Phone: (404) 418-9157
Email: jill@heineckandcompany.com

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